The state has more than 2,300 licensed athletic trainers, and Hall said “we should be able to fully utilize athletic trainers and their modern-day skills.” Licensed athletic trainers can provide physical medicine and rehabilitation healthcare and partner with physicians to provide preventative services, emergency care, clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention, and rehabilitation of injuries and medical conditions.
The bill also makes changes governing the practice of athletic training, including allowing for referrals to athletic training from additional practitioners.
“The collaboration agreement between athletic trainers and physicians provides team-based care that is far stronger than any individualized care,” said Dr. Benjamin Bring, who is the medical director for the OhioHealth Capital City Half and Quarter Marathon, among other roles. “Our goal is to supplement the care we are providing, and we are not replacing physicians. The medical team in sports medicine is always stronger when athletic trainers are involved.”
He said the Capital City Half Marathon, which attracts more than 14,000 runners, has a medical team of 70 to 80 healthcare personnel. More than half, he said, are athletic trainers “because of their abilities and training with multiple medical issues including heatstroke and hyperthermia, cardiac arrest and CPR, exertional associated collapse, and many other first aid skillsets.”
House Bill 176 was introduced into the Ohio Senate on Thursday and has not yet been assigned a committee.