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HFJ urges school administrators to screen athletes

Monday, June 18, 2018

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KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) — As Jamaica observes Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Awareness Week (June 17-23) Consultant, Emergency Health and Director at the Heart Foundation of Jamaica (HFJ), Dr Hugh Wong, is reminding school administrators to ensure that active students, such as athletes, are screened to ascertain risk for sudden cardiac arrest.

Dr Wong highlighted the importance of ensuring that the well-being and safety of students participating in physically demanding activities are paid special attention.

“Screenings will give an indication of the condition of the students' hearts and their readiness to participate in their respective sporting activities,” he explained.

While the Inter-Secondary School Sports Association currently plays an active role in seeking funding to cover screening costs for students, the parents are implored to do their part to ensure the well-being of their children.

The HFJ has also been partnering with a number of Primary and Secondary institutions to have teachers trained in administering CPR, in order to respond readily to cases of sudden cardiac arrest.

Senior Manager, Health Administration, HFJ, Nola Philpotts-Brown, pointed out that while the Foundation continues to advocate for CPR training, it is pushing even harder for the necessary pre-participation screening to be carried out to prevent the need for response to cases of sudden cardiac arrest.

“It is one thing for us to be able to respond, but we want to be able to detect any issues that may exist prior to the children participating in the various activities,” emphasised Philpotts-Brown.

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