Christie MacGregor and Scott MacGregor of the Brain Injury Resource Centre and Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Walker.
Ontario is supporting concussion research with an investment of $25,000 to the Concussion Legacy Foundation Canada (CLFC) to prevent and manage the treatment of brain injuries in Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound. In partnership with the Brain Injury Resource Centre Grey Bruce, CLFC will help to develop treatment protocols and prevention strategies associated with mild traumatic brain injuries, such as concussions.
Bill Walker, MPP for Grey-Bruce-Owen Sound, made the announcement on Rowan’s Law Day (September 30) after visiting the Brain Injury Resource Centre on behalf of Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries.
“The health and safety of all Ontarians is our top priority. Ontario was the first jurisdiction in the country to pass concussion safety legislation and since then, we have made real progress in addressing the culture of amateur sports in this province,” said Minister MacLeod. “This targeted investment will support the prevention and management of concussions while helping people in the community identify the signs and symptoms of a concussion. Knowing what to do if someone has a concussion saves lives.”
This local investment will be used to develop and launch a social media campaign to increase awareness about concussion safety, host local virtual medical symposiums on how to prevent and treat brain injuries, empower local leadership, and strengthen community engagement.
“This is terrific news for our local community. I want to thank Minister MacLeod for this investment, support and her leadership in making Rowan’s Law Day a reality,” said Walker. “Concussion rates in Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound are significantly higher than in other areas of the province and this funding will be extremely beneficial.”
“Fantastic news! Thank you to Minister MacLeod, and MPP Bill Walker for your dedication and support to Rowan’s Day Law and concussion management. The definition of TEAM at the Brain Injury Resource Centre – Grey- Bruce-Owen Sound is: Together Everyone Accomplishes More and what a great team we have in this region. We look forward to working with the Concussion Legacy Foundation Canada and our community partners to help raise awareness regarding prevention and management of concussions in Grey-Bruce, Owen Sound,” said Christie MacGregor of Brain Injury Resource Centre – Grey Bruce, Owen Sound.
Rowan's Law (Concussion Safety), 2018, was passed with unanimous support in the Ontario Legislature in March 2018. The law designates the last Wednesday in September as "Rowan's Law Day" in honour of the memory of Rowan Stringer, a 17-year-old Ottawa rugby player who died in the spring of 2013 from a condition known as second impact syndrome (catastrophic swelling of the brain.) This year, Rowan’s Law Day will be recognized on September 30, 2020.
“We will continue to honour Rowan’s memory and encourage athletes, parents, coaches and educators to change the warrior culture of sport and recognize the serious brain injuries that concussions are,” said Minister MacLeod.
Emergency room visits due to concussions in Grey Bruce are twice as high as the rate in Ontario and are the second highest in the province, with the largest number of emergency room visits being those under 20 years of age.
The highest rates of concussions in Ontario are found among children and youth under the age of 18.
Beginning January 1, 2021, Rowan’s Law (Concussion Safety), 2018, will require amateur sport organizations to establish removal-from-sport and return-to-sport protocols to ensure that an athlete is immediately removed from sport if they have sustained a concussion or are suspected of having sustained a concussion, The law will also ensure that they get medical clearance from a physician or nurse practitioner before they are permitted to return to training, practice or competition.
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