Miami Children’s Hospital (MCH )is offering free electrocardiograms (ECGs or EKGs) to middle and high school athletes in an effort to identify those at risk of sudden cardiac death and prevent tragedy.
“Every three days, sudden cardiac death takes the life of a young U.S. athlete, such as a girl playing soccer, a boy at basketball practice or a high school football player,” said Dr. Anthony Rossi, Medical Director of the Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit at MCH. “Often these young people die without exhibiting advance signs of a heart problem,” he said. What’s more, a typical school or sports physical examination won’t detect a potentially dangerous heart problem.”
“An ECG can help identify children with heart anomalies so that they can receive the treatment they need for a long and healthy life,” said Dr. Rossi. “No child should die from a preventable cause. Please consider this free screening test as a gift to your family.”
The screenings are available by appointment at five MCH locations, including the hospital’s main campus near Coral Gables, as well as at MCH outpatient centers in Doral, Palmetto Bay, West Kendall and Weston. In addition, the hospital has conducted several community screenings, including events held at the Palmetto Bay YMCA in November, utilizing the hospital’s Health on Wheels mobile health unit.
Anyone wishing to schedule an ECG for their child can do so by calling (305) 662-8301. About Miami Children’s Hospital
Founded in 1950 by Variety Clubs International, Miami Children's Hospital® is South Florida’s only licensed specialty hospital exclusively for children, with more than 650 attending physicians and over 130 pediatric sub-specialists. The 289-bed hospital is renowned for excellence in all aspects of pediatric medicine with specialty programs ranked among the best in the nation in 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 by U.S.News & World Report. The hospital is also home to the largest pediatric teaching program in the southeastern United States and has been designated an American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) Magnet facility, the nursing profession’s most prestigious institutional honor.
CAPTION: Dr. Anthony Rossi provides an ECG to teen basketball player Edgar Martinez of Coral Gables.