September 25, 2019
Amidst Concussion Week, the last Wednesday of September is designated as Rowan’s Law Day in honour of Rowan Stringer, a high school rugby player from Ottawa who died from a condition known as second impact syndrome. Rowan is believed to have experienced three concussions over a six-day period while playing rugby. After her passing her father, Gordon Stringer, policy makers and stakeholders including ONF CEO, Kent Bassett-Spiers formed an Advisory Committee to establish legislature to regulate concussion protocol for children and youth in sport. Since the passing of the law, the committee has morphed into a Working Group that collaborates to guide the implementation of best-practice in concussion education.
This year several activities are taking place across Ontario in commemoration of Rowan’s legacy. Members of the Rowan’s Law Working Group joined Hon. Minister Lisa MacLeod in Ottawa where she announced a $105, 000 one-time investment to the Concussion Legacy Foundation to fund local concussion symposiums.
Stakeholders, health care practitioners and community leaders met at Sunnybrook for the second annual Rowan’s Law Day: Clinical and Community Concussion Update. Acquired Brain Injury Program Director, Judy Gargaro provided updates on the new Living Guideline for Diagnosing and Managing Pediatric Concussion and other concussion management implementation activities.
Full roster of speakers:
- Dr. Dan Cass, Rowan’s Law Concussion Working Group
- Stephanie Cowle, Parachute
- Judy Gargaro, Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation
- Stephanie McFarland, Holland Bloorview
- Dr. Neal Westreich, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre TBI Clinic
- Keynote Speaker: Katherine Spenaker, Pink Concussion
Rowan’s Law Day provides a broad platform for concussion experts serving in a variety of capacities to assemble, raise awareness and discuss concussion prevention and management strategies in Ontario.