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Mandated Concussion Training For High School Coaches Takes Effect In January

Aired 8/28/12 on KPBS News.

A new law requires high school coaches to bone up on concussions every two years.

— High school coaches in California will have to learn to recognize the signs and symptoms of concussions. A new law requiring concussion training will take effect in January.

High school coaches already have to take first aid training, but the new law adds a course on concussions that must be completed every two years.

Carmel Valley resident Beth Mallon's son Tommy suffered three concussions playing high school sports. Mallon said making coaches more aware of the problem is only half of the battle.

"The coach can only do so much if he doesn't have good knowledge from the athlete," Mallon explained. "In other words, if the athlete isn't speaking up, it's very difficult for the coach to then do his job."

State law requires schools to take athletes who've suffered a concussion out of the game and get medical clearance before they can return. Football and girls soccer have the highest rates of concussions.

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