01/14/10 Triton High School athletes will now be included in a program designed to provide data that can be accessed when there is an incident that leads to a concussion. The details of the program were presented to the school board during the first meeting in January.

Athletic trainer Eric Callahan said, “Concussion is a hot topic in today’s athletic word.” He said, “Ninety percent of what we know about concussions has been learned in the last ten years.”

The program known as ImPact (Immediate Post Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing) will be purchased by Kosciusko Community Hospital. Athletes will be administered a computerized pre-test to provide a standard against all post tests for assistance in determining an athletes safe return to play, should they suffer from a concussion.

The test tracks information such as memory, reaction time, speed and concentration. Callahan said, “Basically it is a preseason physical of the brain.”

Trion will be provided with 150 pre-tests and 30 post tests in the first year. In consecutive years, they will receive 75 pre-tests and 15 post tests at no cost. The tests would be given every two years to participating athletes. “The only cost to the school would come if more post tests are required.” Callahan said.

According to Callahan and Mason McIntyre, director of athletics, Triton has had 13 diagnosed concussions by a physician this year. The 13 concussions involved only 10 students.

Superintendent Carl Hilling endorsed the program saying, “I’m glad to know our athletes are in good hands and we’re taking proactive steps.”

Carol Anders Correspondent