Mark M. Zukowski, AAI
Mid Am Risk Manager
P: 724-779-7200 x205
Following is a brief on insurance and contact information to process the injury claim.
USA Hockey provides participant accident as follows:
This coverage is provided for registered members participating on all USA Hockey registered ice hockey teams and registered officials. It provides participant medical accident insurance for the covered medical expenses of registered members, on an excess basis, over and above their personal group medical insurance, with no deductible per accident (if there is other valid and collectible insurance in force at the time of the accident). If there is NOT other valid, collectible medical insurance in force at the time of the accident, the deductible becomes $1,000 per accident, before participant accident insurance applies. The deductible portion of a primary insurance policy are NOT COVERED by the policy.
Participant Accident (Excess) insurance provides coverage on an excess basis for accidental medical expenses, accidental death and dismemberment, and/or paralysis resulting from an accidental bodily injury while participating as a member of a team during a USA Hockey-sanctioned game, official tournament game, controlled scrimmage or practice session involving ice hockey. A member is also covered on an excess basis while traveling, as a team, directly to and from a sanctioned game or official tournament in which their team is scheduled to participate. Coverage for travel to and/or from practice sessions is excluded.
To report a claim for USA Hockey Excess Accident insurance coverage:
Please report the claim to K&K to get the process started. Contact your program registrar for a claim form and one will be provided to you.
Heads Up, Don’t Duck
January 12, 2001
Most people do not relate playing ice hockey with spinal cord injuries in the neck — they don’t happen often. But when a severe injury like a spinal cord injury does occur, the question is: What preventive measures could have been taken?
Prevention is usually possible, and should be the first thought in a player’s mind when entering the rink. Think of the countless hours spent skating, weight training, stretching, competing, and studying the sport, so the player can be prepared when the referee blows the first whistle at the start of the game. Knowing how to protect yourself against spinal cord injury is no different than knowing which goal to score against.
Cervical (neck) spinal cord injuries, though infrequent, can be devastating. These most often occur when a player lowers his head or tucks his chin to his chest, causing the vertebrae (bone segments of the spinal column that surround the spinal cord) to align in a straight line, and then collides head first into either another player, boards, or goal posts. This force (called axial compression) is transmitted to the aligned vertebrae, and, with minimal force, can result in the fracture, or breaking, of one of the cervical vertebrae. When the vertebra fractures, it can cause compression on the spinal cord, and it is this compression that results in paralysis.
It is rare that this injury occurs when the neck is in a normal or neutral position — HEADS UP!
At present, there is no protective equipment that a player can use to prevent a cervical spine injury. Helmets can protect a player from concussions but do not protect against cervical spinal cord injury.
The best form of protection is to be aware of the danger involved and keep your HEAD UP!
Produced by the Massachusetts Medical Society in conjunction with Massachusetts Hockey. This information may be duplicated for distribution w/out profit.