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McCullough Middle School Provides Students with A Health Fair Which Could Save A Life

McCullough Middle School provides students with a health fair which could save a life

McCullough Middle School - STEAM health fair

On Wednesday, McCullough Middle School, which is the Colonial School District's STEAM-focused school, introduced students to many healthcare-related careers and services by hosting a health fair.

Throughout the country, Sudden Cardiac Death is one of the top killers of students in school. Greer Firestone, founder of Heart in the Game Foundation, experienced this seven years ago when his extremely active daughter suffered Sudden Cardiac Arrest two days after her high school graduation from out of nowhere. Since then he has been traveling to schools providing free electrocardiogram (EKG) testing to students--with parental consent.

“We screen about 3,500 kids statewide. One in 100 kids, on a national basis, have some abnormality or some cause for concern. The guys we have screened, whether they be athletes or not, we average 2.5 kids per every 100,” said Firestone. “Two of the children of the 3,500 that we have screened already had no family history [of heart disease or illness], but ended up at Nemours with major procedures.”

An EKG screening measures a person’s heart rate, measuring how fast the heart is beating and how each of the chambers is conducting electrical energy. Any abnormal activity spotted can help save that person’s life.

Allied health coordinator Sandra Wilson Hypes believed, with the school's STEAM program--which stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math--the fair was a great hands-on way to get kids interested in being healthier while showing them different ways they can take what they are learning into a career.

“By giving them all of these different perspectives, they are able to feel more comfortable with their skill and more comfortable with the idea that, 'Hey, this could be me,'” said Wilson Hypes.

Students took part in many different hands on activities, including how to stop a wound from bleeding, CPR, and sugar shock, which broke down and displayed the amount of sugar in everyday food and drinks. Local EMT’s, firefighters, and police officers also stopped by to show students what they do every day.

“It kind of brings it alive for them,” said Wilson Hypes. “[The students learned] for every minute that CPR is not started, 10 percent survival rate goes down, so starting CPR early--even hands-only CPR--can save a life.”

Brian Fernandez Nunez, an eighth grader, said once he learned about how many people choke daily, it drove his interest in being more prepared for a medical emergency.

“It can happen at any moment, sudden cardiac arrest, and you need to be there to save a life, because every life matters,” he said. “More beneficial than just teaching it in a class room, where students would sit there and possibly not listen to the teacher, where, here, they get that first-hand experience.”

Cayla Powell, another eighth grader, said she wants to be a pediatrician when she gets older. She believes that learning in a hands-on environment is way more beneficial to students, then just sitting in a classroom reading about it.

“It is pretty awesome that these kids are getting exposed to this kid of experience,” said Powell.

In addition, the ‘Heart in the Game Foundation’ donated a Automated External Defibrillator (AED) to the school.

Story Credit: https://www.wdel.com/features/video-mccullough-middle-school-provides-students-with-a-health-fair/article_a8c14bb2-5945-11e8-92c1-bf5386e03c8b.html