Advancing Healthcare Initiatives for Underserved Students
The ACHIEVES Project (AdvanCing Healthcare Initiatives for undErserVEd Students) is made possible by a generous grant funded by the Potomac Health Foundation. The ACHIEVES project represents an innovative collaboration between George Mason University and the Prince William County Public Schools. The project increases access and quality of healthcare for student athletes, provides education about the emerging health issue of concussion, and builds a centralized injury surveillance system necessary to inform evidence-based prevention efforts within Prince William County Public high schools and middle schools.

Dr. Shane Caswell, Director of George Mason University's SMART Laboratory

Mary Chabolla, ATC, provides care for an injured athlete. Mary is one of two Graduate students who are involved in the increase delivery of Athletic Training Healthcare.

ACHIEVES Project provides the following:

  • Increased Access to Onsite Sports Healthcare: In the continuation of the grant we expanded sports healthcare. 3 graduate student ATs were hired to deliver sports healthcare alongside the existing full-time PWCS ATs at Forest Park (FPHS), Garfield Senior (GFSH), and Woodbridge (WBHS) high schools located in the PHF service area. The graduate student ATs helped ensure that medical care is provided for all athletic home games and most practices. In the 15-month granting period, the graduate student ATs provided a total of 2,616.5 hours of additional sports healthcare exceeding the objective of 2250 hours. The graduate student ATs have directly improved access to care as can be seen by the increased number of patient contacts, the greater number of sporting events provided medical coverage.
  • Concussion education: To date, 205 middle and high school concussion education sessions have been delivered to parents and student athletes. In addition, we have developed and implemented a highly utilized and successful online concussion education that has been delivered to 26,172 parents and student athletes. In total the ACHIEVES project has helped PWCS to delivered concussion education 32,916 PWC residents in the 15-month granting period. This exceeds the 30,000 we projected for the second annual report.
  • Injury surveillance: The continued, ACHIEVES project strived to enact improvements in the reporting of injuries as well as the compliance from record keepers. We have continued the electronic tracking of sports related injuries within the middle schools (16) and high schools (11) in PWCS.
  • Protective Equipment Education: We have developed a web-based protective equipment education module, which we expect to improve knowledge regarding proper selection, fitting, and maintenance of protective equipment for PWCS athletics personnel.
  • Continued Medical Education: Our first CME session of the year “ACHIEVING Best Practices in Concussion Management” was an extraordinary success due to the nationally renowned speakers and high quality education we were able to provide. Upon planning the conference, we anticipated 50 attendees. The CME session received overwhelming positive feedback from the 200+ teachers, school administrators, medical professionals and parents from around the Commonwealth attending. Recently, we provided a second CME session “Preventing Sudden Death in School-Aged Athletes” that targeted PWCS school personnel and Prince William County community of healthcare professionals. This CME was also highly successful with a diverse group of 90+ attendees. In total, ACHIEVES has delivered approximately 1740 hours of free CME. We believe this is evidence that our educational efforts are having far reaching positive benefits.
  • Additional Accomplishments: The ACHIEVES Project continues to have many significant accomplishments that are not apparent in the numbers. Most notably the graduate student AT from Forest Park High School assisted in saving a life (see achieves.gmu.edu and presidentsreport.gmu.edu). In addition, we have successfully worked with middle school nurses to provide education and tools to properly care for and collect data on concussions. We have learned that middle school nurses are caring for many concussions that do not occur in PWCS sponsored sports but rather during community based youth sport activities and physical education class.