New Law Aims To Reduce Students' Concussion- Related Deaths

By: April Davis
By: April Davis

Governor Beverly Perdue signed a bill meant to educate North Carolina families of student athletes about the dangers of concussions and protect players. The law comes almost three years after a J.H. Rose High School football player died after 2 head injuries.

The Gfeller -Waller Concussion Awareness Act requires high school and middle school students showing concussion symptoms to be pulled out of a game or practice immediately and be examined.

The bill is named for Matt Gfeller of Winston-Salem and Jaquan Waller of Greenville, who both died from head injuries suffered during high school football games. Waller's brother says Jaquan got a concussion during practice in 2008, but was cleared to play, then suffered another head injury during a game soon after, and died the following day.

"Protocol is now in place. It's going to be uniform. Any time any event like this happens, we have something in place to prevent it from maybe snowballing into something disastrous. So this is major. This is a good day. This is a victory for the home team today." said Jaquan's brother Markiest Waller.

The bill is endorsed by the NFL, NHL, USA baseball, and high school athletic associations across the state and country.

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  • by BB on Jun 16, 2011 at 06:37 PM
    This is good. But who will make the decision as to whether concussion symptoms are present? Will this person(s) be trained to know the symptoms and that training be more than reading them in a book? Pulled and immediately examined by whom once the symptoms are recognized? I hope at the ER. This is a long time coming, and I would hope my questions are outlined in the law.

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