Green River Star -

By David Martin

Importance of sports physicals discussed


The annual sports physicals are a lot more than a simple rubber stamp of approval for students to compete in school athletics, they could save a life.

The importance of those physicals was discussed Tuesday after questions were raised about why Castle Rock Hospital District didn’t conduct physicals at the high school like they used have in the past. Connie Fauntleroy, medical director at CRHD, said the main goal for the physicals were to find and diagnose possible heart problems that would end up being fatal for a student involved with school activities. Dr. Fauntleroy also said the physicals aim to diagnose previous injuries that haven’t healed completely, as well as evidence of concussions that could worsen in sports where such injuries can occur.

One of the main reasons CRHD doesn’t hosts sports physical days at the high schools is due to a feeling providers from the hospital district got that they were there simply to approve students for competition without giving them a proper physical. Dr. Fauntleroy said students would be lined up in large groups in the locker rooms, sometimes exceeding 50 or more at a time.

The traditional physical day at the high school didn’t give providers enough time to conduct meaningful physicals and Dr. Fauntleroy said providers felt pressured into giving athletics approval due to the environment. Some parents also believe they pay the $25 fee for the physical just to get the provider’s signature on a medical release form.  Another problem with the group physicals involves HIPPA regulations, as the volume of students receiving their physicals resulted in little privacy for students to discuss their medical information with doctors.

After the physicals were relocated to Castle Rock Medical Center, Dr. Fauntleroy said the medical environment has benefited both providers and students, which has increased the quality of care given by CRHD.


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