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Mercy Health Announces Official Health Care Partnership with the Ohio High School Athletic Association

March 20, 2019

Mercy Health Contact: Nanette Bentley
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                         
513-952-4713, [email protected]
OHSAA Contact: Tim Stried
614-267-2502, ext. 124, [email protected]
 Mercy Health Announces Official Health Care Partnership with
the Ohio High School Athletic Association
(COLUMBUS, OH; March 20, 2019) –Mercy Health, a Catholic health ministry serving Ohio and Kentucky (part of Bon Secours Mercy Health), announces that it will serve as the exclusive Official Health Care Partner of the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) for three years. OHSAA promotes the values of participation in interscholastic athletics as an integral part of a student's educational experience.
As OHSAA’s Official Health Care Partner, Mercy Health will have a presence at state championships and tournament events. It will serve as a thought leader and education provider of orthopedic, sports medicine and general health information for administrators, coaches, athletic trainers, student athletes and parents. Available educational resources include content that coaches, parents and students can use to:
  • Prevent the most common injuries
  • Recognize and treat concussion
  • Understand the role that proper stretching, hydration and nutrition play in keeping student athletes healthy
  • Determine when a student has fully recovered and is safe to return to play
In addition, Mercy Health is collaborating with the Governor’s office and OHSAA to develop an initiative that will offer school engagement programs addressing youth addiction prevention as well as resiliency.
“Mercy Health is pleased to partner with the Ohio High School Athletic Association to share the expertise we’ve developed as the state’s leading sports and general medicine partner to 85 schools and counting,” said Don Kline, President, Great Lakes Group, Mercy Health. “Our goal is to keep kids safe on and off the field and we’re excited to partner with Governor DeWine’s office and OHSAA to provide proven resources that address addiction with kids, families, communities and schools that need support.”
“This new partnership between Mercy Health and the Ohio High School Athletic Association is focused on ensuring our students are healthy,” said Ohio Governor Mike DeWine. “We know that many who battle substance use disorder become addicted to opioids after taking prescription medication following an injury. Raising awareness about alternative injury treatments, injury prevention and responsible recovery from an injury can help prevent addiction.”     
“At OHSAA, we believe that participation in interscholastic athletics programs complements a student’s school experience and teaches lifelong lessons of hard work, teamwork and self-discipline, in addition to promoting citizenship and sporting behavior, instilling a sense of community and fostering a lifetime appreciation for sports and healthy lifestyles,” said Jerry Snodgrass, Executive Director, Ohio High School Athletic Association. “We’re adding to the resources available to our more than 1,600 member schools by partnering with Mercy Health to provide vital health information and develop and make available proven addiction prevention resources across the state.”
Mercy Health, OHSAA and the Governor’s office will work collectively to identify and deploy science-based best practices with the aim of connecting students, parents, faculty and administration to much needed addiction prevention and resilience resources.
Mercy Health is part of Bon Secours Mercy Health (BSMHealth.org,) one of the top 20 health systems in the United States and part of the top performing quartile of Catholic health systems for lowest cost per case for patient care. Mercy Health is the largest health system in Ohio and among the top five employers in the state, with more than 33,500 employees serving communities throughout Ohio and in Kentucky. Mercy Health provided care for patients more than 6.8 million times in 2017. The system includes assets of $6.8 billion and nearly 500 care facilities including 23 hospitals and 26 post-acute care facilities including senior living communities, hospice programs and home health agencies. Its clinically integrated network of more than 2,700 health care providers coordinates more effective and efficient care for more than 350,000 patients, saving money for taxpayers through the Medicare Shared Savings Program. As part of Bon Secours Mercy Health, the ministry provides nearly $2 million per day in community benefit. 
About the OHSAA
The Ohio High School Athletic Association is a private, non-profit association of high schools and 7th-8th grade schools, which are volunteer members. The OHSAA conducts postseason tournaments in 26 sports, including 13 for boys and 13 for girls, which involve more than 400,000 student-athletes, 65,000 coaches and 15,000 licensed officials. The OHSAA’s mission is to regulate and administer interscholastic athletic competition in a fair and equitable manner while promoting the values of participation in interscholastic athletics as an integral part of a student's educational experience. The OHSAA represents its member schools by recognizing and promoting academics, the safety of participants, good citizenship and lifelong values as the foundation of interscholastic athletics.
Tim Stried
Director of Communications
Ohio High School Athletic Association
614-267-2502, ext. 124  office
614-267-1677  fax
4080 Roselea Place
Columbus, OH 43214

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