Rhythm of Our Youth Cardiac Screening Returns to Area High Schools
August 11, 2021, MORRIS, IL – Morris Hospital’s free Rhythm of Our Youth cardiac screening is returning to several area high schools fall semester of the 2021-22 school year, including Gardner-South Wilmington H.S. on August 25, Morris H.S. on September 8, Coal City H.S. on September 22, and Newark H.S. on October 19. The purpose of the screening is to prevent sudden cardiac death in high school students by identifying those who may have undiagnosed existing cardiac abnormalities.
With the exception of last school year, the screening has been conducted at each high school in the Morris Hospital service area every other year since 2016 as the result of funding provided by generous donors to the Morris Hospital Foundation.
On the screening day, a team of specially trained volunteers from Morris Hospital perform electrocardiogram (ECG) screenings free of charge to students who have received parental permission to participate. An electrocardiogram is a non-invasive, painless test that measures the electrical activity of the heart and detects certain heart abnormalities that can lead to sudden cardiac death.
Screenings are held during PE class or study hall. The test takes about three minutes to complete.
Based on results of the screenings, about 3 percent of students are referred to their physician for additional follow-up. Typically, less than 1 percent are found to have a medical problem that requires cardiac intervention. Results are sent home to the student’s parents and are not shared with the school.
Parents who wish to have their child screened should complete an electronic consent form prior to the screening day by going to www.morrishospital.org/rhythmofouryouth.
The screening is scheduled at Minooka H.S. and Seneca H.S. for the second semester of the 2021-22 school year. Dwight, Marquette, Ottawa, Reed-Custer, and Wilmington are on the rotation for the 2022-2023 school year.
Sudden cardiac death claims more than 2,000 lives of children and adolescents in the United States each year. Most victims of sudden cardiac death have had underlying heart conditions that could have been detected through a simple ECG.
For more information or to volunteer at a Rhythm of Our Youth screening event, go to www.morrishospital.org/rhythmofouryouth.
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