Fri, Jun 14, 2024
Jacksonville Sports Medicine Program celebrates 40 years
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Jacksonville Sports Medicine Program celebrates 40 years

  • PublishedJune 5, 2024


The nonprofit has spent decades working to make youth sports safer through awareness, advocacy and injury prevention in Florida.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Jacksonville Sports Medicine Program (JSMP) celebrated its 40th anniversary with an awards ceremony and fundraiser at River City Railway on Tuesday. The nonprofit has spent decades working to make youth sports safer through awareness, advocacy and injury prevention in Florida.

“Tonight, we’re celebrating 40 years here in Jacksonville, 40 years of advocacy and 40 years of actually saving kids’ lives,” Executive Director Bob Sefcik said.

First Coast News teamed up with JSMP and Who We Play For, for a free heart screening event for students earlier this year

First Coast News Anchor Heather Crawford was awarded the ‘Excellence in Sports Media Awareness Awards’ for helping organize the event and raise awareness about sudden cardiac arrest.

RELATED: St. Johns County mom urges kids to get screened after her daughter died of sudden cardiac arrest

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The 2024 Dr. Stephen Lucie High School Sports Safety Program of the year went to Englewood High School represented by Blake Mace and Dr. Wesley Mills. 

Bo McDougal was honored as the 2024 Nemours Children’s Health Joseph E. Bourdon Sports Medicine Achievement Award Winner. He has dedicated his life to the profession of athletic training.

“The awards program is our special opportunity to recognize boots on the ground, the people that are doing great things in our community, to follow our mission to keep kids safe and helping us promote that mission throughout the rest of the community,” Sefcik said.

It’s a mission that took Sefcik to testify this week before the Florida High School Athletic Association.

“I sit as a member of their Sports Medicine Advisory Committee,” Sefcik said. “And we proposed three policy updates. One had to do with our heat illness policy. One had to do with sudden cardiac arrest and the recent bill that was passed by our governor on mandatory CPR training and first aid training for our paid coaches. And then our third policy, which I’m most proud of, now sets the standard across the state for all member schools of the FHSAA to have health care providers on site for all collision sports events.”

Those collision sports include tackle football, wrestling and boys’ lacrosse.

“So, that is a step in the right direction for Florida,” Sefcik said. “We’re going to lead the nation with that.”



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johndweiner@gmail.com

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