Concussion Highlights Need for Athletic Trainers

Andy Berg Headshot

A scary concussion at a high school girls’ basketball game in Kentucky has two parents hoping for a mandate that athletic trainers be present at all high school sporting events.

Walton-Verona basketball player Maggie Buerger hit her head on the hardwood during a game last year, resulting in a severe concussion. Buerger has recovered but her family says athletic trainers need to be present at more than just football games.

In Buerger’s case, the lack of an athletic trainer at the game could have had tragic consequences.

There were just 14.2 seconds left in the game when Buerger took a charge and went down, hitting her head on the floor. Her parents, David and Amy, both former college athletes, say that based on texts and conversations with others at the game, a paramedic didn’t arrive until 12 to 15 minutes after Maggie hit the floor.

“He calls another squad to come, which they are 18 minutes out before they can get to the gym,” Amy told Local 12.

“There was the chaplain of the local fire department. He actually prayed with us,” David said.

Maggie was still unconscious, and a call was made for a life flight, but it was still a 15-minute drive to get her to air care.

“All and all, the time frame — it was about an hour from the time the accident happened to the time she landed at UC,” Amy said.

“I didn’t remember anything until I woke up in the gurney with the neck brace on with my mom standing next to me,” Maggie said.

Maggie was diagnosed with a severe concussion but suffered no lasting effects. Her dream is to play college basketball. Her parents’ is to have athletic trainers on staff at all high school competitions across the state.

“That would be my ultimate dream to think that all kids could have coverage for, you know, injuries in their sports while they’re going on,” Amy said.

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