Sports Physicals Available at St. Gianna Clinic
It’s hard to believe summer just officially began a little over two weeks ago! Yet, the school year is approaching soon, and it’s time to start preparing for the upcoming year. If your child is a student athlete and still needs a sports physical done for the forthcoming season, not to worry! We can still get you in before the school year starts, in as little as a couple days!
“There’s not a long waiting line,” said Dr. Edward Bayer, pediatrician at St. Gianna Clinic. “…We have on-day appointments. Usually, there is an opening between one of the providers, either myself or one of the family medicine doctors, [and we] can get someone in pretty quick.”
To help make things easier, Dr. Bayer suggests filling out the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) pre-participation physical evaluation forms prior to a sports physical visit. “[It’s] about two pages long and gathers past medical history on the child. We review [this information in the sports physical],” explained Dr. Bayer.
If a child has already been coming year after year, this information would already be gathered in his or her chart, but the form is still filled out and the information is reviewed to make sure everything looks correct.
The sports physical covers a past medical history inquiry and a heart, respiratory, and musculoskeletal screening. For male patients, there is an additional genital screening.
While we can take sports physicals at any time, Dr. Bayer highly recommends getting the sports physical during a well visit. He considers the sports physical a mini version of a well visit. “When I do the well child physicals, I try to incorporate all the aspects I would in case they were going out for a sport, so they wouldn’t necessarily have to come in for a separate sports physical.”
Given that the sports physical visit is a shorter visit than a well-child visit, the sports physical visit is not nearly as comprehensive as a well-child visit.
Well visits are good for a year. “If it’s a well visit, we do, at least for myself, other anticipatory, preventative guidance for safety that you wouldn’t necessarily do with a sports form,” noted Dr. Bayer. “It [the sports physical] doesn’t look for if you have any signs of depression, [or if] you have any other big issues that may need to be addressed as well.”
One thing to bear in mind is the timing of the sports physical. “It’s kind of weird, the WIAA,” Dr. Bayer commented. “If you have a physical after April 1st, then your sports form is good for two years. If you had it in March, then it’s only good for a year.”
Dr. Bayer again emphasizes the importance of the yearly checkup. “If you’re coming in yearly, you’ll always have a date to put on there that’s within the year.”
Another plus to doing the sports physical at the time of a well visit is insurance coverage, as most insurances will cover a yearly well visit. However, the standalone sports physical visit costs a flat dollar amount that is less than a well child visit.
We hope you visit St. Gianna Clinic for a sports physical or well visit soon!