New law created to help save student athletes’ lives

ROCKY RIVER- A new law going in effect next week, aims to protect student athletes across Ohio by alerting them to a leading often undiagnosed deadly heart condition.

Lindsay's Law will mandate students and parents to sign a permission form stating they understand the warning signs of Sudden Cardiac Arrest or SCA before they are allowed to participate in scrimmages, practices or games. The law applies to all public, private and youth sports organizations for athletes 19 years old and younger.

"If we're protecting students heads from concussions...it's important we're also protecting their hearts," said Lindsay Davis, the namesake behind the law during a phone interview.

Davis was crowned Miss Ohio United States in 2011. The law is a cause she's been fighting for ever since her days as a teenage ballerina when she had her first scare with SCA.

According to the Ohio Department of Health the SCA is the leading cause of death in student athletes 19 years old or younger. The law goes into effect August 1, 2017 and includes play to participate sports and sports that are sponsored by a business or non profit organizations.

"It's a good thing because it's going to make parents aware of what Sudden Cardiac Arrest is it will provide parents and student athletes the opportunity to have the conversation at home and also with their pediatrician," said Rocky River High School Principal Rob Winton.

Rocky River Schools emailed reminders to parents about the new law in hopes for a smooth rollout next week. Under the law coaches must complete annual SCA training.

The state department of health lists warning signs of SCA as chest pain, unexplained fainting, dizziness, or fatigue, shortness of breath or unusually fast heart beats.

"We're losing thousands of kids every year from this because a lack of education," said Davis. "If it just saves one life it's worth it."