What is an Athletic Trainer?
ATs are highly qualified, multi-skilled health care professionals who collaborate with physicians to provide preventative services, emergency care, clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation of injuries and medical conditions. ATs work in collaboration with a physician as prescribed by state licensure statutes. ATs improve functional outcomes and specialize in patient education to prevent injury and re-injury. ATs are able to reduce injury risk and shorten rehabilitation time for their patients, which translates to lower absenteeism from school and reduced health care costs.
The scope of practice of a Certified Athletic Trainer falls within the Five Domains of Athletic Training.
- Injury/illness prevention and wellness protection
- Clinical evaluation and diagnosis
- Immediate and emergency care
- Treatment and rehabilitation
- Organizational and professional health and wellbeing
To become a Certified Athletic Trainer one must graduate from a bachelors or entry-level Master’s degree program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). The candidate must then pass the national certification examination conducted by the Board of Certification (BOC). 49/50 states also require that ATs be licensed or registered with the state board of health.