Northwestern's Hunt Batjer, MD, Named New Co-Chair of NFL Head, Neck and Spine Committee
Hunt Batjer, MD, chair of the departments of neurosurgery for both Northwestern Memorial Hospital and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, has been named as one of the new co-chairs of the NFL Head, Neck and Spine Medical Committee, as announced by the NFL on Tuesday, March 16.
“I am deeply honored to have been selected for this important role by Commissioner Goodell,” said Batjer. “I take this responsibility very seriously and find it a great fit joining my passions for neuroscience and athletics. The players – past, present, and future – and the public can be assured that our committee will be vigilant in working to make the game safer through injury prevention, education, treatment, and advocacy.”
Batjer co-chairs the committee alongside Richard Ellenbogen, MD, UW Medicine Professor of Neurological Surgery at the University of Washington School of Medicine. In his role, Batjer will be responsible for appointing other members of the committee. Additionally, this committee is charged with:
- Ensuring that NFL team medical staffs have access to the best technology and research on the prevention and treatment of head, neck and spine injuries.
- Studying injury data and equipment research to assist the NFL, its teams and its players in providing the safest environment for minimizing injuries to the head, neck and spine.
- Examining the latest treatment strategies and recommend to club medical staffs and players the best practices regarding treatment of injuries to the head, neck and spine.
- Joining with the NFL Alumni Association to expand on existing programs such as the 88 Plan and support additional research on the long-term impact of concussions and related injuries.
- Encouraging and supporting research and education to increase public awareness about head, neck and spine injuries, their prevention and treatment.
Batjer joined Northwestern in 1995 from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, where he was professor of neurological surgery. He attended the University of Texas on a baseball scholarship and was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles as a left-handed pitcher. He is a graduate of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School.
Batjer holds the distinguished chair as the Michael J. Marchese Professor and Chair of the Department of Neurological Surgery at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. He is past president of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons and Society of University Neurosurgeons, and past chair of the American Board of Neurological Surgery. He currently serves as vice president of the Neurosurgical Society of America.
Kris Lathan, Director
Northwestern Memorial Hospital