Sports, School Physicals Important for Students’ Health
The Nebraska School Activities Association requires that a physical evaluation be completed each year before an athlete can participate in sports. The state of Nebraska requires students entering Kindergarten and Seventh grade have school physicals.
“A sports physical is completed to evaluate the overall health of an athlete to ensure they can safely do the sport they are enrolled in,” said Brett Wergin MD, family medicine provider at Jefferson Community Health & Life.
By having your Primary Care Provider such as a Medical Doctor, Physician Assistant or Nurse Practitioner complete a physical exam once per year they will be able to check the appearance of the athlete including musculoskeletal, check for conditions that would be exacerbated by exertion including asthma, cardiac conditions including the presence of a heart murmur. During the sports physical the medical provider will do an exam, listen to heart and lungs, evaluate ears, nose and throat. The provider will also ask you about your family history which would put the athlete at risk for serious cardiac conditions or sudden death.
For school physicals, students entering Kindergarten and seventh grade are required to have physicals. A urine screening is not required.
It is important that your athlete sees someone they are comfortable speaking with because important preventative and safety measures will be discussed including smoking, vaping and a youth risk behavior survey as well as some depression screening questions.
The forms for school and sports physicals required by Fairbury Public Schools and the NSAA are on the JCH&L website on the JCH&L Fairbury Clinic page. Forms can also generally be picked up at your school. Forms should be filled out before a student arrives for a school or sports physical.
Typically, Kindergarten and seventh grade physicals are required to be complete before school starts, and immunizations must be up to date. Immunizations in Jefferson County are offered by Blue Valley Community Action at Jefferson Community Health & Life North Building, 825 22nd St. Sports physicals are generally required before the first sports conditioning or practice of the new school year.
At JCH&L Fairbury Clinic, school and sports physicals may be billed to insurance, and may be combined with a well child check if the child has not had a well child check in the last 12 months. Most insurances do not require well child checks to go toward the deductible. JCH&L Fairbury Clinic has also scheduled 2 evenings for sports physical appointments this summer, July 6 and 25, in addition to regular daytime appointments.
To make an appointment with one of our family medicine physicians, nurse practitioners or physician assistant’s, please call 402-729-3361.