NFL CBA and Medical Staff
October 17, 2011
The topic on ESPN for much of the late spring and summer was the fact that the NFL and the Players’ Union did not have a contract. Their Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) had ended in March and the owners locked out the players. The lock out finally ended in late July or early August and professional football returned.
There were many things involved in the CBA and that’s one reason it took as long as it did. There were some changes made with regards to the medical staffs on each team and that it was I will look at here today..
As a part of the new agreement, each team must have at a minimum of 2 full-time certified athletic trainers and a licensed physical therapist available at the team facility. I don’t think this will mean more positions for athletic trainers necessarily, but it does increase the staff available to provide the best care for the athletes. That is the point, right?
I wonder how many teams don’t already meet these requirements. I would say it’s a definite that each team already had at least two athletic trainers on staff if not 3 or 4. It would also surprise me if the teams don’t also have a physical therapist on staff. It’s possible they may not have one onsite, but having access to one is a must!
Another change they have made to the CBA is that the team physicians who are added to the sports medicine team in the future must be trained in sports medicine in addition to their primar specialization.
I think it is important that the NFL and its players have taken important steps here to mandate healthcare provisions for their valuable employees: the players.