For the first ever time, a senior NFL Official in the US has acknowledged a link
between American football concussion and a degenerative brain condition called
chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

Jeff Miller, the NFL Senior Vice President for Health & Safety was answering
questions before the US House of Representatives and, when asked whether
there was a link between the game and neurodegenerative diseases like CTE, he
replied: “The answer to that question is certainly yes”.

The acknowledgement marked the first time a senior NFL league official had
publicly conceded the link between American football and CTE, which medical
research has closely linked with repeated head trauma, often causing symptoms
such as early onset of Alzheimer’s disease, aggression, dementia, depression and
others.

In the US a high incidence of degenerative brain disease has been found in
former NFL football players which has led to thousands of NFL alumni seeking a
Court settlement which could cost the league US$1b.

The subject has gained widespread media attention both at home and abroad in
recent years. The 2015 Hollywood film ‘Concussion’ which starred Will Smyth,
saw a doctor who fought the NFL’s efforts to conceal his medical research on
brain damage suffered by ex-players. In Ireland, sporting organisations such as
the GAA and the IRFU have moved swiftly to put in place rigorous protocols to
ensure the protection of player welfare.

Ronan Hynes, Health & Safety Expert commented that “Concussion is a
potentially serious brain injury that must be taken extremely seriously and
requires evidence based multi-disciplinary clinical management. We need to be
acutely vigilant about prevention and education. This is a global problem
requiring an international response not just on a sport by sport, country by
country basis”.

If you have any queries in relation to health and safety or have suffered a serious
injury such as a brain injury, please contact Ronan Hynes, Partner for expert legal
advice on 061-414355 or rhynes@sellors.ie.

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