CANTON, Ohio — In an effort to help provide top care to NFL players after their careers come to an end, the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Hall of Fame Health has partnered with Providence Saint John’s Health Center in California to offer retired players the opportunity to receive complementary cognitive screening assessments.
The health system, located in Southern California, will have the Pacific Neuroscience Institute administer the screenings to players after their careers are over, checking for any sports-related injuries or illnesses so that they can be treated before they worsen over time.
“Like so many pro athletes, professional football players can suffer long-term injuries that only worsen with age and limit quality of life,” said Michael Ricks, Providence Saint John’s chief executive. “Providence Saint John’s has both renowned specialists to address these injuries and related illnesses and a range of highly qualified experts who will focus on preventive health care for these men and their families.”
Players will have the chance to address memory and cognition issues during one-on-one evaluations, helping the former athletes transition from the game into retired life.
“Saint John’s has been a pivotal partner for us in many ways,” said Jeremy Hogue, CEO of Hall of Fame Health. “They were one of the first health centers to see our vision and raise their hand to join. They’ve engaged with our football community, just like this new cognitive screening program exemplifies. And you have to take into account that this is Los Angeles, and there are so many former NFL players and families living in this area – one of the most important markets for us in the country. They’re an ideal partner for all we are trying to do.”
A study conducted in 2017 and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, in 99% of brains obtained from NFL players, as well at 91% of college football players and 21% of high school football players.
The screening opportunity now offered to retired players could prove extremely important after their careers are over, especially with the increased likelihood of CTE in NFL players.
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