Sports Catastrophic Insurance Not Law in Nebraska
Photo: Video by kmtv.com
Omaha, NE -- The plays can be unforgettable. The injuries can be life changing. Remember Norfolk football player Isaac Pfeifer? He was paralyzed last year from the waist down after a football injury. As a former college football coach, Sandy Buda knows the pain of playing.
"I've been around some injuries," said Buda. "I've been around those situations and you just hold your breath that it won't happen but every once in a while it does, in all sports." Although it's not law in Nebraska most student athletes, like Pfiefer, are covered under the Nebraska School Activities Association catastrophic insurance policy. It covers medical expenses up to $2-million if the school is a member. The family picks up the $50-thousand deductible. Stan Kiger even bought extra insurance when his three kids were in school. "Fortunately we didn't have any major injuries so I never had to use it," said Kiger.
In Illinois, it's not an option anymore. The state now requires all school districts to purchase a $3-million policy for each student athlete. The district picks up the tab. "The government, it's in everything else so why not this?" said Buda. Steven Gubbels coaches football in Arlington. He says a state law may not be needed, at least not yet. "I'm not sure that there's really a lot of reason to have that discussion at this point because of what already is in place," said Gubbels.
The state activities association says it offers the insurance to its 309 school members. All public and most private schools in the metro are members. Omaha even requires every athlete to be covered under their own plane even if they're on Medicare.