The true cost of injuries to NHL players: $218-million each season

Sports and Society Administrator January 26, 2014 0

The Globe and Mail | January 20 2014

Michael Cusimano had a simple idea: If we worry about the cost of absenteeism in the workplace, what about at the hockey rink?

Dr. Cusimano, a neurosurgeon at Toronto’s St. Michael’s Hospital and an internationally recognized expert on concussion injuries, thought if he could assign a dollar sign to head injuries, he might get the attention of the National Hockey League – and perhaps even improve player safety all the way down to minor hockey. If losing more than $40-million a year to concussions doesn’t get their attention, perhaps nothing will.

The St. Mike’s Canadian Brain Injury and Violence Research Team studied 1,307 high-level players who participated in at least one regular-season NHL game during the 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons. On Monday, the results are being published in the British Medical Journal’s Injury Prevention.

Working primarily with fellow medical researchers Laura Donaldson and Bing Li, Dr. Cusimano established that 825 of the players – or 63.1 per cent – missed one game or more to injury over that time period.

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