Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - 40

40

CHAPTER 2

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Legal Considerations and Administration

All sports medicine professionals, including physicians, nurses, physical therapists,
and certified athletic trainers, should carry malpractice insurance to prevent personal
financial hardship in the event they are found liable in a legal matter. Most employers
carry liability insurance on employees who are working for them. When working outside
the scope of that job, a person should carry additional liability insurance.

THINKING IT THROUGH
Sixteen-year-old Johnny
was participating in a regular basketball practice
with the rest of his team
when Johnny  slipped in
a puddle of water during horseplay with
another player and hit his head. This blow
to his head caused Johnny to lose consciousness. As a result of this injury, he was
taken to the emergency room and hospitalized for 24 hours. At the time of the injury,
the coach was answering a telephone

malpractice
Professional
misconduct or
lack of professional
skill that results in
damage to the
patient; negligence
by a professional,
such as a physician,
nurse, certified
athletic trainer, or
coach.

call in the physical education office, and
therefore was not directly supervising the
practice.
■	 Was the coach negligent in his responsibility to supervise the team's practice?
From a risk management standpoint,
how could the athletic trainer have prevented the problem from occurring?
What should the coach and athletic
trainer do to prevent such problems in
the future?

Specific laws for physicians, athletic trainers, fitness instructors, and other members
of the sports medicine team vary from state to state; therefore, it is important for professionals in these fields to know the laws of their state before beginning work. However, it
is wise to assume that the sports medicine team has the following legal responsibilities:
■	

Knowledge of assessment and management of injuries

■	

Providing and maintaining safe and effective equipment and facilities

■	

Instructing the athlete or client in safety procedures and methods to
minimize injury

■	

Planning and executing an appropriate response for medical emergencies

■	

Taking reasonable steps to provide medical assistance when required

■	

Preventing the athlete or client from returning to participation if there is risk
of aggravating the injury

■	

Maintaining confidential medical records

■	

Mandated reporting-each state has laws requiring certain people to report
concerns of child abuse and neglect. In many states all people are required to
report these concerns, whereas other states identify specific professionals as
mandated reporters. Specific procedures are to be established in making
referrals to child protective services.

This is by no means a complete list of legal responsibilities. Nonetheless, adopting
responsibility for these duties will help ensure the safety of the athletes or patients
under supervision, thereby protecting the members of the sports medicine team.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e

Contents
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - Cover1
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - Cover2
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - A
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - B
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - i
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - ii
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - iii
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - iv
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - Contents
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - vi
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - vii
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - viii
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - ix
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - x
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xi
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xii
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xiii
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xiv
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xv
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Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xvii
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xviii
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xix
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - xx
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - 1
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - 2
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - 3
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - 4
Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - 5
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Sports Medicine Essentials, 3e - Cover4
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