News Release: Emory Healthcare

Jun. 8,  2009

Emory Teams Up With National Football League Player Care Program

News Article ImageEmory University Orthopaedics & Spine Hospital

The Emory University Orthopaedics & Spine Hospital is one of five hospitals chosen to participate in the NFL's new spine treatment program for retired players. The program is designed to make specialists available to evaluate and treat spine-related conditions.

Each hospital in the program provides an orthopaedic spine surgeon who serves as program director and coordinates the services of a team of health care professionals in the evaluation and treatment of the former players.  The Emory team includes John Heller, MD, orthopaedic surgeon, as program director; Gerald Rodts, MD, neurosurgeon and Michael Schaufele, MD, physiatrist.

"We are pleased to be selected by the NFL as the southeast regional comprehensive spine care program," says Scott Boden, MD, professor of orthopaedic surgery at Emory University School of Medicine and director of the Emory Orthopaedics & Spine Center. "Our center has 16 physicians dedicated to every aspect of spine care."

The program, part of the NFL Player Care Plan, is available to retired players vested under the Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle pension plan.

Other hospitals selected include Mt. Sinai (New York), UCLA Health Systems (Los Angeles), University of California at San Francisco and Washington University (St. Louis).

In 2008, Emory participated in another program sponsored by the NFL Player Care Plan - a heart screening for retired players.

Interested players should contact the NFL Player Care Plan to connect with the appropriate program director who may initiate a course of treatment.

Retired NFL players may also find additional information on medical and benefits programs at


The Robert W. Woodruff Health Sciences Center of Emory University is an academic health science and service center focused on missions of teaching, research, health care and public service. Its components include schools of medicine, nursing, and public health; Yerkes National Primate Research Center; the Emory Winship Cancer Institute; and Emory Healthcare, the largest, most comprehensive health system in Georgia. The Woodruff Health Sciences Center has a $2.3 billion budget, 17,000 employees, 2,300 full-time and 1,900 affiliated faculty, 4,300 students and trainees, and a $4.9 billion economic impact on metro Atlanta.

Learn more about Emory’s health sciences:
Twitter: @emoryhealthsci

File Options

  • Print Icon Print