Take Care Clinics add concussion education to physicals

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Take Care Clinics, which is owned by Walgreens, has introduced a new concussion education component as part of its annual camp, back-to-school and sports physicals, the clinic operator announced on Thursday.

Concussion rates in youth sports have doubled over the past decade, driving heightened concern and greater awareness among parents, athletes and administrators nationwide, the company stated. This is what prompted the clinic operator to help address the ongoing need for prevention and information.

Take Care Clinics, located at more than 370 Walgreens stores, have been providing physicals since 2006. The camp, back-to-school and sports physicals, regularly $60, are available at the reduced price of $39 through Sept. 30 as part of a limited offer. Physicals are performed by nurse practitioners and, in select locations, physician assistants, and are routine health physical examinations for school-aged children. All camp, back-to-school and sports physicals at Take Care Clinics will now include concussion education to help families prevent and recognize concussion symptoms, at no extra cost.

“These physicals represent a valuable opportunity for families to meet with a trusted healthcare professional who can screen patients for undetected health conditions, identify children that may be at risk for injury and provide important health and wellness information and advice,” stated Heather Helle, divisional VP for Walgreens consumer solutions group. “The inclusion of concussion education and awareness as part of our annual physicals follows our recent overall expansion of healthcare services, and is another way we’re providing comprehensive care as part of our mission to help people get, stay and live well.”

According to the American Journal of Sports Medicine, high school athletes sustain an estimated 300,000 concussions per year, and for young people ages 15 to 24 years old, sports are the second leading cause of traumatic brain injury behind automobile accidents.

“Helping parents and athletes to know the signs of concussion symptoms and how to tell when immediate medical attention is needed is crucial, and our nurse practitioners and physician assistants can play an important role in providing this information,” added Sandy Ryan, chief nurse practitioner officer and clinical advocate for Take Care Clinics.

As part of the concussion education, patients receive take-home materials with information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stressing the importance of concussion prevention, recognizing symptoms reported by athletes, and warning signs all parents and guardians should understand.

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