An annual screening programme for cardiac abnormalities took place at Old Swinford Hospital, on Tuesday 12 March 2013.
Over 100 students and staff aged between 14 and 35 were tested by CRY, Cardiac Risk in the Young a registered charity raising awareness of undetected cardiac abnormalities in young, apparently healthy individuals. The tests, held in the Medical Centre, involved an electrocardiogram (ECG) which records the electrical activity of the heart.
Every week in the UK, 12 apparently fit and healthy young people aged 35 and under die suddenly from a previously undiagnosed heart condition. Many of these deaths are preventable. Many have had symptoms that have not been recognised.
Old Swinford Hospital has been promoting awareness and fundraising for CRY ever since the tragic death of Zoë Teale, the 23 year old daughter of Catering Manager Pete Teale. Since her death in 2009, Pete has raised over £62,000 and over 1,000 young adults in the West Midlands have been screened.
Mr Paul Goode, Director of Boarding at Old Swinford Hospital said:
“We have tested the vast majority of our senior students over recent years and the School is proud of its strong association with CRY. We became involved through a tragedy and although we cannot change the past, we can strive to change the future by encouraging our students to have this simple test. It is an opportunity not only to re-assure students, but highlight any potential risks to prevent the sort of tragedy that has befallen too many families because of a lack of awareness.”
After the screening, every student’s ECG/ECHO, completed Health Questionnaire and Consent Form will be forwarded to CRY’s expert Cardiologists for analysis. Any student who is considered to have an abnormal ECG will be followed-up and invited to have a full cardiac evaluation.
Picture shows: 16 year old Michael Ellis with Gurpal Bhogal, Cardiac Physiologist CRY