COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Acting upon recommendations handed down following the heatstroke death of University of Maryland Football player Jordan McNair, the school’s athletic medical staff will no longer be considered employees of the athletics department, the school announced Friday.
Team physicians, athletic trainers, nutritionists, and mental health practitioners will now be considered part of the Division of Student Affairs in the University Health Center, said a statement from the athletics department. The new alignment of medical personnel who work with University of Maryland athletes marks the final fulfillment of the 20 recommendations handed down by the external safety review conducted after McNair’s death. The move places Maryland among a handful of other Power-5 schools that have moved their medical staffs outside of their athletic departments as to avoid potential conflicts of interest.
“Our priority in the last year has been implementing the recommendations from the external safety review to safeguard the health and well-being of our student-athletes,” said Athletic Director Damon Evans. “This plan will further enhance the physician-directed, autonomous care our student-athletes receive and advance our efforts to provide comprehensive, integrated, patient-centered care for our student-athletes.”
The school said it is also searching for a head team physician who will serve as a full-time employee of the college within the University Health Center. Once the position is filled, all sports medicine staff will report to the new head physician. Currently sports medicine staff are being overseen by physicians at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
More about the recommendations made by a panel led by Rod Waters, click here.