A national search has been launched to hire a new head team physician for the University of Maryland, with the chosen individual to work under the University Health Center.
The new accountability structure — which will see the new hire report to the head of the University Health Center, the vice president for student affairs and ultimately the university president — represents the last of 20 changes made by the university upon the recommendations of sports medicine consultant Rod Walters, who investigated the heatstroke-related death of offensive lineman Jordan McNair last year.
The head team physician will oversee all team physicians at the university. Athletic trainers, nutritionists and mental health practitioners will be moved outside the athletic department’s domain and become a part of the University Health Center, as well, according to The Diamondback.
The announcement came exactly three weeks shy of the one-year anniversary of McNair's death, and one day after the University of Kansas revealed that it was altering its sports medicine model into one overseen by physicians within the university's healthcare system.
Maryland's search could take several months, according to athletic director Damon Evans.
"We have devoted considerable time to this effort, and getting to the right recommendation for the health, safety and well-being for our student-athletes," Evans said during Thursday's teleconference, as reported by The Baltimore Sun. "Our driving force or factor behind this is simply to enhance the autonomy of our patient healthcare services for our student-athletes."