Concussion can negatively impact a child’s ability to learn. School-based health professional staff have a unique opportunity to monitor students during recovery and mitigate the potential negative impact. Little is known about school health professional staff’s knowledge and comfort with concussion diagnosis and management.
We aimed to evaluate whether a tailored concussion education session could improve school health professional staff’s knowledge about pediatric concussions. A secondary aim was to determine their knowledge retention and comfort with concussion management over the following year, including the impact of periodic follow-up education. We hypothesized that there would be sustained improvement in concussion knowledge and self-reported comfort in concussion management.
This study was a pre/post-intervention assessment with longitudinal follow-up. The study investigators provided a three-hour educational presentation about concussions in school-aged children. A survey on knowledge and management of pediatric concussions was administered immediately before and after this educational intervention. Knowledge retention and comfort with management was assessed at six months and at one year post-intervention.
Participants included Cincinnati Health Department school health professional staff in attendance at their Back to School in-service, prior to the start of the 2017-2018 school year.
Sixty school health professional staff from thirty-three schools completed the baseline knowledge survey, and forty completed all four assessments. Among the 40 participants with complete data, on average, the correct response rate (mean number correct, SD) was 82.3% (18.1/22, 11.0) pre-education, 91.8% (20.2/22, 10.3) immediate post-education, 86.4% (19.0/22, 10.8) 6-month follow-up, and 87.3% (19.2/22, 10.9) one-year follow-up.
A brief didactic educational intervention improved pediatric concussion knowledge and management skills among school health care providers. Periodic and in-person education is likely necessary to optimize knowledge retention.

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