Cardiac Screening for 2,000 GAA Players – Irish Times

By Advanced Medical Services AMS14 Jul 2011


Irish Times-Health
Tuesday, 29th March 2011

Mobile cardiac screening for 2,000 GAA players

Brian O’Connell

Heartaid, a new mobile cardiac screening service founded by Cork man Ed Donovan, has agreed a deal with the Gaelic Players Association (GPA) to provide screening to inter county players.

The programme, which will be available to more than 2,000 players across the country, will be funded by the GPA, and follows recommendations made by the GAA’s medical, scientific and welfare committee.

Recent reports have found that the incidence of Sudden Adult Death Syndrome (SADS) is higher in the Republic of Ireland than many other European countries.  Studies have shown that cardiac screening is an effective way of assessing risk in young persons in particular.

Heartaid provides mobile cardiac screening to schools, clubs and organisations involved in sport.  The programme began two weeks ago with members of the Kildare senior football team, and will continue for six months.  The cardiac screening unit is brought to t allocation of the player’s choice, and each player is asked to fill out a personal and family history questionnaire.  They are then examined by a medical doctor and submit to an electrocardiogram.  The result of these tests are reviewed by a consultant cardiologist and a final report sent to each player.

Mr. Donovan said:  “In Italy, cardiac screening is mandatory for people involved in competitive sports.  They have reduced the incidents of sudden cardiac death by 89 per cent”.