VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. — Student-athletes from Volusia County Schools will, for the first time, be offered free electrocardiogram screenings, also known as ECGs and EKGs, in addition to this year’s annual state-required sports physical for middle and high schoolers, through a partnership with AdventHealth.
What You Need To Know
- Volusia schools, AdventHealth to offer ECGs, EKGs for student-athletes
- Tests designed to save lives of athletes with unknown heart conditions
- One in 300 student-athletes have heart issue that puts them at risk, AdventHealth says
- One Seabreeze student almost lost life after heart stopped during team tryout
While they will be optional for the upcoming school year, they will be mandatory for the 2022-23 school year.
Sophomore Julia Bosset, who recently celebrated her 16th birthday with her father, said she hopes this will help prevent any other student from going through what she did. She nearly died while trying out for a sports team.
“It is beyond words to express that she is with us today,” said Jeff Bosset, Julia's father.
Bosset is a Seabreeze High School cheerleader, but her life changed on October 13, 2020 when she tried out for the basketball team. While running a lap, she collapsed.
“I went into sudden cardiac arrest and my heart stopped, and basically, if I did not get CPR in those few minutes, then I would have been dead,” Julia Bosset said.
According to AdventHealth, sudden cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death among student-athletes.
One in 300 are estimated to have an undetected heart condition that puts them at risk.
Bosset's father said they were shocked when it happened to his seemingly healthy daughter.
“She had just been cleared two months earlier from the current Florida High School Athletic training protocol, which does not include an EKG, and she passed the screening fine and we thought that she was healthy to play sports,” Jeff Bosset said.
Getting an EKG outside of her regular physical is not something her family ever thought about, Julia Bosset said.
“We didn’t get the EKG, and if we had gotten that, that probably would have detected what would have happened,” Bosset said.
But that won’t be a risk any more.
“It is great because this is a test that could save lives, and it will only take like 10 minutes,” Bosset said.
Volusia County Schools also bought 30 more defibrillators — a device that helped save Julia’s life. Her father said he hopes this is just the beginning of what can be done.
“A lot of these things can be detected in advance with early health screenings so if we can save just one life by doing these things, . . .then we have accomplished what we are trying to accomplish,” Bosset said.
Registration for AdventHealth’s free sports physicals for student athletes for the 2021-2022 school year open Monday. The free event will be held June 3-5 in the Rolex Lounge of the Daytona International Speedway.