CSHB 15(JUD): "An Act relating to prevention and evaluation of and liability for concussions in student athletes."

00 CS FOR HOUSE BILL NO. 15(JUD) 01 "An Act relating to prevention and evaluation of and liability for concussions in student 02 athletes." 03 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA: 04 * Section 1. The uncodified law of the State of Alaska is amended by adding a new section 05 to read: 06 CONCUSSIONS IN STUDENT ATHLETES; FINDINGS. The legislature finds that 07 (1) concussions rank among the most commonly reported traumatic brain 08 injuries in children and adolescents who participate in sports and recreational activities; 09 (2) the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates 10 that as many as 3,900,000 concussions occur each year in the United States as a result of 11 sports and recreational activities; 12 (3) a concussion is caused by a blow to or jarring of the head or body that 13 causes the brain to move rapidly inside the skull, resulting in a mild to severe traumatic brain 14 injury, which may occur with or without loss of consciousness, and may disrupt normal brain

01 function; 02 (4) a concussion may occur during an organized or unorganized sport or 03 recreational activity as a result of a fall or from players colliding with each other or another 04 obstacle; 05 (5) the risk of catastrophic injury or death from a concussion or other head 06 injury increases when the injury is not properly evaluated and managed, and the athlete is 07 allowed to continue to participate in sports or recreational activities following the concussion; 08 (6) although voluntary nationwide guidelines for managing concussion in 09 sports recommend assessing concussions on an individual basis, with gradual return to play, 10 athletes continue to be returned to play prematurely, putting them at risk for greater injury or 11 death. 12 * Sec. 2. AS 14.30 is amended by adding new sections to article 3 to read: 13 Sec. 14.30.142. Concussions in student athletes: prevention and reporting. 14 (a) The governing body of a school district shall consult with the Alaska School 15 Activities Association to develop and publish guidelines and other information to 16 educate coaches, student athletes, and parents of student athletes regarding the nature 17 and risks of concussions. Guidelines developed under this section must include a 18 description of the risks of return to play and standards for return to play, including the 19 procedures required under (c) and (d) of this section. 20 (b) A school shall annually provide to a student and the parent or guardian of a 21 student who is under 18 years of age written information on the nature and risks of 22 concussions. A student may not participate in school athletic activities unless the 23 student and the parent or guardian of a student who is under 18 years of age have 24 signed a verification of receipt of the information required under this subsection. 25 (c) A student who is suspected of having sustained a concussion during a 26 practice or game shall be immediately removed from the practice or game. 27 (d) A student who has been removed from participation in a practice or game 28 for suspicion of concussion may not return to play until the student has been evaluated 29 and cleared for participation in writing by a qualified person who has received training 30 and is currently certified, as verified in writing or electronically by the qualified 31 person, in the evaluation and management of concussions. In this subsection,

01 "qualified person" means either a 02 (1) health care provider who is licensed in the state or exempt from 03 licensure under state law; or 04 (2) person who is acting at the direction and under the supervision of a 05 physician who is licensed in the state or exempt from licensure under 06 AS 08.64.370(1), (2), or (4). 07 (e) A person who conducts an evaluation under (d) of this section and who is 08 not paid for conducting the evaluation may not be held liable for civil damages 09 resulting from an act or omission during the evaluation, except that the person may be 10 held liable for reckless or intentional misconduct and for gross negligence. 11 Sec. 14.30.143. Concussions in student athletes: school district immunity. 12 (a) A school district may not be held liable for an injury to or the death of a person 13 caused by a concussion and resulting from the action or inaction of a person employed 14 by or under contract with a nonprofit youth organization if 15 (1) the action or inaction occurred during the delivery of services by 16 the district or organization in compliance with AS 14.30.142; 17 (2) the organization is under contract with the district to provide the 18 services; and 19 (3) before the provision of services, the organization provided to the 20 district written verification of 21 (A) a valid insurance policy covering the injury or death in an 22 amount not less than $50,000 for each person and $100,000 for each incident; 23 (B) compliance with the protocol for prevention and reporting 24 of concussions required in AS 14.30.142. 25 (b) This section may not be construed to impair or modify the ability of a 26 person to recover damages for harm caused by the negligent or reckless actions of an 27 employee or contractor of a school district or by the existence of a condition, 28 equipment, program, or structure known by the school district or organization to be 29 unsafe. 30 (c) In this section, "youth organization" means a public or private entity 31 qualified to do business in the state that provides a program or service to persons

01 under 19 years of age.