CONCERNED ABOUT CONCUSSION RATES, LEAGUES HAVE ADOPTED THE FOLLOWING PROTOCOLS TO DETECT BRAIN INJURIES
NFL | League-employed spotters sit in a sky box monitoring the action. When they suspect a concussion, they are now authorized to call a medical timeout, stopping the game so medical personnel can attend to a player. The spotters relay any concerns to the team physician, an unaffiliated "neurotrauma consultant" and a trainer, who then evaluate the player. There have been three medical timeouts so far this season.
NHL | It too uses spotters. Before this season each club had its own trained concussion spotter. Now teams can use a spotter supplied by the league, who takes mandated online seminars and studies written materials but cannot stop games.
MLB | When a concussion is suspected, the athletic trainer is the first responder. The home-team physician then takes over further evaluation.
December 14, 2015
The NCAA's process is similar to the NFL's: Spotters stationed in the replay booth can stop a game when they suspect a concussion and relay information to trainers and physicians.
NBA | If a potential concussion occurs, the player is removed from the game by trainers to undergo evaluation by team doctors.
NASCAR | When a driver is involved in a crash and his car can no longer roll, he must be taken to the infield, where doctors evaluate him. If his car is not immobilized, the infield doctors can decide whether to evaluate him.
MLS | After a concussion is believed to have occurred, the player is removed from the game and evaluated by his team's medical staff, led by the club's neuropsychologist.