Insuring Sports Concussions: Give Proper Care a Future

File the health insurance claim form with a penXLNTbrain CEO Steve Lewis says traumatic brain injury (TBI) survivors insurance needs should motivate providers to incorporate new practices, technology

by Harry Kerasidis, MD

Concussion care has been filibustering for years, often defaulting to a common phrase, “more research is needed.” Still, as the data pours in for evaluation and awareness escalates fears, concussions are still treated a wide variety of ways. Despite new state legislation requiring enhanced concussion protocols, and “best practices” established by numerous medical, sports and pediatric associations, there is a huge gap between establishing  standards and executing them.

Bridging the gap would provide a solid future for the millions of athletes seeking proper concussion management. But this bridge is not made of steel and hardware. Instead, it’s built with insurance, and paved with technology.

Insurance providers and HMOs are feeling the heat from TBI survivors, which compels insurers to partner with concussion management programs and technology to manage industry dynamics of patient acquisition, growth and cost constraints.

Everyone wins, especially the athlete and organization. One needs a full concussion management process, the other needs to provide it for the safety of its athletes, and comply with law. Insurance gets the premium, the clinic earns the related service fees, and both can be integrated through one clinical-caliber online, and mobile concussion management tool, created by a neurologist. Best of all, the athletes get proper concussion education and treatment.

The opportunity is emerging in front of us.

“Insurance providers can control their costs better using big data about the incidence and care protocols required. By underwriting a concussion program, they can drive patients to utilize medical providers within their system and networks improving risk management and acquiring new customers,”said Steve Lewis, CEO of XLNTbrain.com.

Lewis said a discount would drive the athlete to the care system supported by the insurance company, as well as improve athlete health outcomes.

“The concussion world does not yet have an established brand for a full service concussion management solution. Some established providers specialize in specific phases of the full continuum,” Lewis said. “Yet this approach shows tremendous corporate responsibility, while acknowledging a huge growth market demand for concussion knowledge to calm the worries of both athletes and their families. Of course, the organizations also realize administrative efficiencies not available in traditional paper-based or non-integrated solutions.”

The key that makes this concussion insurance engine run is the technology. The tests, tools, assessments and immediate notifications need be available via the internet, at home and for monitoring the return-to-learn and return-to-play protocols. This “return-to-learn” step is becoming increasingly important, although notable organizations like the NCAA currently face scrutiny for not addressing the educational needs of the athletes in the recovery cycle. It is more than return-to-play. A leader in this field is the Michigan State high School Athletic Association.

Through my neurology clinic, I’ve been operating XLNTbrain for several years now, and I’ve found it to be capable of serving both the clinic and insurance providers’ needs.

If you are an insurance provider, healthcare company or related to athletics, I would be glad to entertain any questions about how to become the company that solved concussions. Please arrange the scheduling through Matthew at (814) 934-1994 or through XLNTbrain.com.

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About Harry Kerasidis, MD

Harry Kerasidis, M.D is the founder and medical director for the sports concussion management platform XLNTbrain, LLC, based in Maryland. He is also the founder of Chesapeake Neurology Associates in Prince Frederick, Maryland and serves as the Medical Director for the Center for Neuroscience, Sleep Disorders Center and Stroke Center at Calvert Memorial Hospital. Dr. Kerasidis authored Concussion-ology: Redefining Sports Concussion Management for All Levels, published in December.

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