Montgomery County Public Schools and MedStar Health Launch Innovative Sports Medicine Partnership

Montgomery County Public Schools and MedStar Health Launch Innovative Sports Medicine Partnership

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Healthcare professionals from the sports medicine team at MedStar Heath pose for a group photo outdoors.

Maryland’s largest school system and the region’s largest health system are teaming up to promote safety in scholastic sports.

ROCKVILLE, Md. — Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) and MedStar Health are announcing a new partnership to enhance the school system’s sports medicine program for scholastic athletics. Ahead of the upcoming 2023-24 school year, a newly-formed team of 12-month certified athletic trainers hired by MCPS has already begun working in all 25 of the county’s high schools. Their goal is to provide streamlined and enhanced care for student-athletes across all athletic programs.

“We are very excited to launch our innovative sports medicine program, which includes a full-time certified athletic trainer in each of our 25 high schools,” said MCPS Systemwide Athletic Director Dr. Jeff Sullivan. “Thanks to the commitment to safety from our school leaders and partnership with the region’s largest health system, MedStar Health, we now have medical professionals on staff to assist with the assessment and treatment of student-athlete injuries, prevention, rehabilitation, and more.”

Youth football players from Montgomery County, Maryland, run on their practice field.MCPS, Maryland’s largest school system, is the state’s first to establish a sports medicine partnership of this kind with MedStar Health, the region’s largest sports medicine provider and largest overall health care provider.

As part of the innovative partnership, MedStar Health physicians and sports medicine clinicians will provide medical oversight and support for the school-based athletic trainers throughout the school year. Also, MCPS student athletes will gain direct access to MedStar Health’s elite sports medicine services should they need it. These services, like advanced sports orthopedics, are relied upon by the region’s top professional sports teams, like the Washington Wizards, Washington Capitals, Washington Mystics, Baltimore Ravens, and Baltimore Orioles, and top collegiate programs, like Georgetown University, Towson University, and Gallaudet University.

“With Montgomery County Public Schools and MedStar Health working together, families can feel good about the care their student athlete is getting on and off the field,” said Katie Brodka, MS, ATC, Manager of Athletic Training Services for MedStar Health in the Washington, D.C., region. “As a sports medicine leader in the region, we have already worked with many of the new MCPS athletic trainers, and we are excited to continue collaborating with them to promote sports safety for high schools along with their corresponding communities.”

MCPS and MedStar Health announced the partnership on Aug. 9, the first day of the county’s fall sports practices and tryouts.

Heading into the new school year, the partnering sports medicine providers will be focused on updating Emergency Action Planning (EAPs) toolkits for all MCPS schools, creating an environment of learning for the 25 MCPS athletic trainers, and establishing evaluation and treatment protocols necessary for their licensure.