August 28, 2013 at 6:55 AM
LIVINGSTON, NJ – This week, Livingston High School athletes are being prepped, both mentally and physically by local professionals from St. Barnabas and Montclair State’s Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center.
On Tuesday, Aug. 27, representatives from the St. Barnabas Matthew J. Morahan III Memorial Health Assessment Center for Athletes visited LHS to provide professional health screening services to students in order to satisfy the school’s bi-yearly physicals testing requirement.
The program, which is now focusing on testing the freshman and junior grade levels, has two components: impact testing and EKG screenings.
“Our student athletes are required to be baseline tested every two years in order for us to be better equipped to handle head injuries to our student athletes and more specifically, concussions,” explained LHS Athletic Director, Patrick Genova.
“In past years our athletic trainer, Paul Ehrenfeld, would schedule and conduct the testing with our coaches, which takes place here at the high school in one of our computer labs. Paul is going to continue to coordinate the schedule with our coaches; however medical staff from St. Barnabas will actually conduct the testing here at the high school. This leaves more time for our trainer to be on the field with our athletes.”
If a concussion is suspected, parents will be given the opportunity to choose between having their child retested at the high school with Ehrenfeld, and taking him/her to St. Barnabas Ambulatory Care Center.
Retesting at the Center by a physician will require a $30 fee billable to insurance; however, the fee will be waived for families who do not have insurance. Retesting done at the high school will be free of charge; however there will be no physician’s assessment.
The second and optional component of the new testing structure includes an on-school-premise EKG screening performed by St. Barnabas representatives.
“We are currently finalizing the details of this component of our partnership but we are exciting and thankful to the Matthew J. Morahan III Memorial Health Assessment Center for Athletes for their commitment to the student athletes in our community,” said Genova.
A program especially tailored to parents will be held on Sept. 10 at 7 p.m. at LHS. This program conducted by Diana Toto, Program Coordinator for the Matthew J. Morahan III Health Assessment Center for Athletes, will act as a forum for parents and caregivers to discuss the importance of monitoring concussions and cardio screening. “We are certain that it will be informative to anyone who attends,” said Genova.
After LHS Lancers are prepped physically, professionals from Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center at Montclair State University (MSU) will be coming to talk to fall sport captains, coaches and other members of the fall programs about leadership, the role of the captain and details related to the new anti-bullying initiative recently being implemented by the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association.
This Thursday, Aug. 29, John McCarthy and Dr. Rob Gilbert from the museum will be coming to LHS to give “The Captain’s Workshop” which is part of a series of programs that the museum conducts for the Super Essex Conference (SEC league) which Livingston High School participates in.
McCarthy and Gilbert both teach at MSU and have come together to create the Institute of Coaching run out of the Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center. Most programs have been sponsored by Investors Bank and are tailored to meet each participating high school’s educational needs.
“It’s really a pleasure for us to work with so many student athletes that will be the leaders of tomorrow and giving them the right tools and message to make the most out of their high school athletic experience,” said Dave Kaplan, Director of Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center. Kaplan also coordinates the program content and scheduling with participating schools.
“We are excited about both of these programs,” said Genova, “plus the Team Sunsmart program…which emphasizes the need to wear sunscreen to our athletes.”