Thanks to a new Illinois law signed in 2011, Protecting Our Student Athletes Act, all teenage athletes participating in school sports require a physician release to return to sports after a concussion. The law requires school boards to work with the Illinois High School Association to develop guidelines and other pertinent information and forms to inform and educate coaches, student athletes, and these athletes' parents of the nature and risk of concussions and head injuries, including continuing to play after a concussion or head injury. Additionally, this new law requires a physician release in order for the student athlete to once again participate in practice or competition.
Physicians obtain important information about a patient’s cognitive, motor, behavioral, language, and executive functioning through a neuropsychological evaluation. The results from the evaluation can help the physician make a diagnosis and determine when it is safe for an athlete to return to play.