Starting this school year, public schools in Virginia are required to have concussion-management policies in place to help protect student-athletes.
The state is among more than 30 that have passed laws that aim
to protect young people who suffer concussions while playing sports. A handful of other states are considering similar measures.
Most of the states' concussion guidelines require an athlete to
leave competition or practice when a concussion is suspected, and
return after being cleared by a medical professional.
Most also require school athletic officials to educate coaches, athletes and parents about concussions.
Concussions occur when the brain jostles inside the skull after a blow.
Those injured can face long-term cognitive and physical disabilities.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)