2023-2024 Policy Library 
    Jul 16, 2024  
2023-2024 Policy Library

CMS Sportsmedicine Policies for a Safe Athletics Program

Mission Statement

CMS Sports Medicine is committed to providing outstanding health care to the student-athletes of Claremont McKenna, Harvey Mudd and Scripps Colleges. Through the application of our professional knowledge and collective experience, the Sports Medicine Staff will strive to maintain and improve the level of excellence achieved by our student athletes. Care for these individuals, including education, prevention, evaluation, treatment, and rehabilitation will be carried out in a positive atmosphere where diversity and individual needs are recognized and appreciated. The Sports Medicine Staff, in collaboration with our Team Physicians, the Student Health Center, and other area health professionals, endeavor to provide proper direction in all areas of physical and mental well-being.


The Health and Safety of the student-athlete at the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges is the highest priority of the Athletics Dept. and its staff. In order to ensure that this remains true, the following components of a safe athletics program have been adopted from the NCAA Sports Medicine Handbook Guidelines 1A and 1B, and are followed in accordance with NCAA and SCIAC regulations and recommendations.

Diagnosis, management, and return to play determinations for the college student-athlete are the responsibility of the institution’s athletic trainers (working under the supervision of a physician) and the team physician. In the interest of the health and welfare of the student -athletes at CMS, a student-athlete’s healthcare providers have been given the clear authority for the student-athlete’s care. The delivery of healthcare services is focused only on the individual athlete’s needs and concerns. The following guidelines have been adopted by CMS to insure independent, objective medical care for the student-athletes:

  1. The physical and psychosocial welfare of the individual student-athlete will always be the highest priority of the athletic trainers and team physicians.
  2. The Head Athletic Trainer acts as the designated medical director for the CMS Athletics Dept.
  3. The physicians and athletic trainers will always practice in a manner that integrates the best current research evidence within the preferences and values of each student athlete.
  4. The clinical responsibilities of the athletic trainers will always be performed in a manner that is consistent with the written or verbal instructions of a physician or standing orders and clinical-management protocols that have been approved by the programs designated medical director.  
  5. Decisions that affect the current or future health status of a student-athlete who has an injury or illness will only be made by a properly credentialed health professional (e.g. a physician or an athletic trainer who has a physician’s authorization to make the decision)
  6. In every case that a physician has granted an athletic trainer the discretion to make decisions relating to individual student-athlete’s injury, management, or sports participation status, all aspects of the care process and changes in the student-athlete’s disposition will be thoroughly documented.
  7. Coaches are not allowed to impose demands that are inconsistent with guidelines and recommendations established by the NCAA, the SCIAC, or sports medicine and athletic training professional organizations.
  8. CMS has adopted this administrative structure for delivery of integrated sports medicine and athletic training services to minimize the potential for any conflicts of interest that could adversely affect the health and well-being of student-athletes.

Components of a Safe Athletics Program

1. Pre-participation Medical Exam. All student-athletes are required to undergo an annual comprehensive medical examination by a qualified physician (MD or DO) no earlier than 3 months prior to the beginning of the first sport of participation of an academic year. Athletes will not be allowed to participate in ANY manner until medically cleared. Athletes are required, prior to their first date of participation at CMS Athletics, to complete a sickle-cell solubility test, or sign a written release  declining the test.

2. Health Insurance. All athletes are covered by individual, parental, and/or institutional medical insurance to cover for medical expenses resulting from athletically related injury or illness from an NCAA sanctioned event or practice. Click here for Insurance Statement  

 3. Preseason Preparation. Student-athletes are protected from premature exposure to the full rigors of sports. An athlete’s compliance with preseason conditioning programs, combined with the coaches’ adherence to appropriate and reasonable acclimatization protocols, should provide the student-athlete with optimal readiness.

 4. Acceptance of Risk. Student-athletes are required to read, understand and sign an acceptance of risk declaration annually and are informed of the potential risks involved in athletic participation. Click here for CMS Acceptance of Risk form  

 5. Planning/Preparation. The CMS Athletics Dept. assures that there has been appropriate planning for, and supervision of, practice, competition and travel ensuring the safety of the student-athlete to the furthest extent possible.

 6. Athletics Staff Education/Training. All coaches and relevant athletics dept. staff members are to be current in First-Aid/CPR/AED certification by the American Red Cross or the American Heart Association. Additionally, coaches will be educated in, but not limited to, concussion, heat illness and eating disorder recognition/awareness. Records of certifications/education will be maintained by the Sports Medicine staff.

 7. Student Athletic Training Aides. Students will be educated and trained by the sports medicine staff to appropriately fulfill their roles as aides. They will be CPR/AED/Blood-Borne Pathogen certified

 8. Safe Environments. CMS Athletics supports a positive student-athlete development model through respect and sportsmanship. Each student-athlete is afforded a reasonably safe environment protected from personal endangerment such as abuse (physical, sexual, emotional) assault, hazing or harmful punishment. Policies and procedures are in place to immediately identify, report, and protect individuals reporting incidents of endangerment. Staff and students reporting such behaviors and incidents are protected from any negative repercussion. These policies govern student-to-student, coach-to-student and staff-athlete interaction. Click here for CMC’s Civil Rights Policy .

 9. Minimizing Potential Legal Liability. Liability is a concern of responsible athletics administrators, coaches and staff. CMS accepts the responsibility of minimizing the risk of injury.

10. Equitable Access to Medical Care. CMS Sports Medicine does not practice or condone illegal discrimination on the basis of race, creed, national origin, sex, age, disability, social status, financial status, sexual orientation or religious affiliation within the athletics or sports medicine programs. Availability and accessibility to medical resources is based on established medical criteria (e.g. injury rates, rehabilitation) rather than the sport itself.

11. Medical Referrals. CMS Sports Medicine maintains a medical referral system for referral to the appropriate medical provider whether it is an emergency, orthopedic injury, medical condition or psychological condition. Referrals will be made to qualified medical practitioners and will follow appropriate standards-of-care.

12. Equipment. Purchasers of equipment shall be aware of and use safety standards. Attention is directed to maintaining proper repair and fitting of equipment at all times in all sports.

Student-Athletes are:

  • Informed what equipment is mandatory and what constitutes legal equipment
  • Provided with mandatory equipment
  • Instructed to wear, and how to wear, mandatory equipment during participation by a person knowledgeable with the fit and use of that equipment.
  • Instructed to notify the appropriate personnel when the equipment becomes unsafe or illegal.

13. Facilities. The adequacy and conditions of the CMS facilities used for particular intercollegiate athletics events and practices will not be overlooked, and periodic examination of the facilities will be conducted by persons knowledgeable with the facility and demands of the activity. Inspection of the facilities includes not only the competition area, but also warm-up and adjacent areas. Sports Medicine facilities shall adhere to local, state and federal regulations pertaining to health care facilities.

14. Environmental Factors. CMS has an inclement weather policy that includes provisions for decision-making with regards to events such as lightning, heat and air-quality concerns. The institution’s sports medicine staff is empowered with the unchallengeable authority to cancel or modify a work-out or event for health and safety reasons. The decision to terminate a SCIAC athletic activity in the event of environmental concerns will be made by sports medicine personnel present or the institutional event administrator present at a contest in consultation with institutional Intercollegiate Athletics Facilities & Operations staff, institutional Sports Medicine personnel, and/or game official(s) / umpire(s). Click here for SCIAC AQMD Policy  

15. Blood-Borne Pathogens. In 1992, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration developed standards directed at minimizing or eliminating occupational exposure to blood-borne pathogens. CMS applies these standards to its personnel and facilities.

16. Security and Safety Plan. Claremont McKenna College has developed a critical response plan to provide facility, staff and fan safety for potential incidents such as bombings, riots, fire, natural disasters, terrorism threats, etc. Click here for CMC Emergency Management Plan  

17. Emergency Care. CMS has on file and annually updates an emergency action plan for each athletics venue and facility. Click here for CMS Emgergency Plan  

18. Catastrophic Incident Plan. CMS has developed Catastrophic Incident Guidelines  to guide the effective response to catastrophic events such as death or permanent disability that occur during an intercollegiate athletics-sponsored activity.

19. Concussion Management Plan. CMS has a CMS Concussion Management Plan  in place for student-athletes. The plan details the diagnosis of, management/treatment of, and return-to-play, and return to learn criteria.  The plan includes the process of communication between school administrators, faculty, staff, and the athlete’s family, adhering to the necessary HIPAA, FERPA and other personal information disclosure guidelines.  Athletes are educated annually in concussion awareness including signs and symptoms, management of, and risk of not reporting a possible concussion.

20. Communication and Privacy. Communication between the Sports Medicine staff and medical providers is critical to quality medical care. Athletes are encouraged to sign a HIPAA Authorization form allowing the athletic trainers, physicians and other medical providers to communicate freely with regards to the healthcare of the athlete. Additionally this authorization allows for communication with coaches on status and severity of injuries. An athlete must provide additional authorization for communication with parents or other non-medical entity. Click here for CMS HIPAA form  

21. Drug Testing. CMS is responsible for ensuring compliance with NCAA drug testing program requirements.

22. Legislation. CMS is responsible to ensure compliance with the NCAA and SCIAC by-laws relevant to health and safety as outlined in Division and Conference manuals.