Feb 4, 2021
Alabama Debates Bill That Could Change ATC Care

Lawmakers in Alabama debated a controversial new bill that could change how injuries are treated by athletic trainers in the state.

A recent report from WAFF48 highlighted the story of Senate Bill 73, which would “provide further for the licensing and regulation of athletic trainers to treat athletic injuries sustained by physically active individuals.”

Photo: Matthew Folsom / Creative Commons

The bill aims to combine the expertise of athletic trainers and doctors to help those who suffer an athletic injury, according to Alabama State Senator Jabo Waggoner.

“It establishes an Athletic Training Advisory Council between the Board of Medical Examiners and the Alabama Board of Athletic Trainers.” Senator Waggoner told WAFF48.

President of the state’s athletic trainers’ association, Kyle Southall believes the bill could allow for greater access to care for those in rural parts of the state.

“We could do the initial evaluation so if it warranted a physician referral or anything further, then the athletic trainer would facilitate that if that person is in a rural area where there aren’t many doctors around,” Southall said to WAFF48. “That person might just go home rather than being seen otherwise.”

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But not everyone is on board with Senate Bill 73. Take Connor Knapp, part of the Alabama Physical Therapy Association, for example. He told WAFF48 that the bill could open “up the scope of practice to athletic trainers to legally treat physically active individuals without any clear definitions for most any medical condition.”

“As a physical therapist I am not doing cardiac surgeries for example, I am staying within my scope of practice,” Knapp told WAFF48.

To read the full story from WAFF48 on Alabama’s Senate Bill 73, click here

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