If you are a parent of a student who wants to play or try out for school sports, you need to be aware of required health screenings and physical examinations. Most schools require all participants or would-be participants in any form of sports activity to submit the results of a pre-participation physical examination. This must be done every year.
The State of Connecticut is no exception. The Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) requires completion of their Pre-Participation Physical Evaluation form by the student, his or her parent(s)/guardian, and a licensed physician.
The Pre-Participation Physical Evaluation
The physical evaluation consists of four major parts.
The student, with the help of his or her parent(s)/guardian, should complete this section prior to taking the form to a physician. Questions focus on the following general areas:
- General health history
- Heart health questions about the student and family
- Bone and joint questions
- Specific medical questions
If any question is answered “Yes,” an explanation must be provided on the form or a separate sheet. Circle any question that you cannot answer so that you can discuss it with the physician.
Supplemental History for Athlete with Special Needs
This section provides an opportunity to identify any disabilities, visual or hearing impairment, allergies, use of special equipment, etc. There is also a section that allows identification of any past physical or medical difficulties.
Physical Examination Form
This section is completed only by the examining physician. It addresses the following areas:
- Questions about mental and physical well being
- Use of tobacco, alcohol, and drugs
- Medical examination of vital signs, musculoskeletal condition, and general fitness
The bottom of the form asks the physician to clear the student for all sports without restriction or without restriction but with recommendation for further evaluation or treatment. The physician may also withhold clearance for all sports, some sports, or in order to evaluate further.
The original copy of this form is retained in the physician’s office and can be amended at any time.
The clearance form summarizes the conclusions of the physician regarding whether the student is cleared for all, some, or no sports activity. There is also a section to identify allergies and other emergency information.
Important Reminder: Submitting a Pre-Participation Physical Evaluation form for sports activity does not fulfill the requirement of submitting a regular Health Assessment Record as required by your school. Be sure to check with your school for specific policies.
Having a Pre-Participation Exam
Many families ask their regular physician or pediatrician to complete this examination. During the crush of back-to-school activities each year, obtaining an appointment in time is often not possible. In that case, or if you do not have a regular health care provider, go to an urgent care center.
When you go for your exam, please observe the following steps:
- Download, print, and fill out your portion of the Pre-Participation Physical Evaluation form.
- Reserve an examination time at the clinic if possible.
- Bring your completed form with you.
- Bring your student’s health insurance information and ID.
If you live near one of our clinics in Wethersfield or Rocky Hill, CT, come to Kathy’s Urgent Care. We perform many of these examinations every year, and we can help you with any questions that you might have. We also treat minor sports injuries.
Authored by Dr. Tom Brown
Our clinics are open 7 days a week. Just call to reserve a time or walk in at your convenience. Our contact information is available on our website at www.kathysurgentcare.com.