3 Godfrey-Lee Schools Recognized for Cardiac Preparedness by State of Michigan

Today, three Godfrey-Lee schools were named MI HEARTSafe Schools by the Michigan Departments of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and Education (MDE), American Heart Association (AHA), Michigan Athletic Association (MHSAA) and Michigan Alliance for Prevention of Sudden Cardiac Death of the Young (MAP-SCDY) which recognizes schools that are prepared to respond to cardiac emergencies.

With the assistance of our two Spectrum Health school nurses — Rebecca Quigley and Nicole Kalinowski — East Lee Campus, Godfrey Elementary and the Early Childhood Center achieved this designation.

Between 1999 and 2009 in Michigan, there were 3,134 young individuals between 1 and 39 years of age who died of sudden cardiac death. Of those, 246 were between 5 and 19 years of age. In its second year, the MI HEARTSafe Schools designation is Michigan’s commitment to reducing the number of sudden cardiac death in our youth. Last year was the first year of the program, and 40 schools were designated in Michigan.

“Sudden cardiac death claims the lives of more than 300 Michigan children and young adults between the ages of one and 39 years of age each year,” said Dr. Eden Wells, chief medical executive of MDHHS. “Implementation of CPR and an automated external defibrillator (AED) within 3-5 minutes is crucial for increasing the chance of survival. Cardiac arrest is often unexpected and frightening, and I’m pleased to see so many of our schools taking preventative measures to address this health issue.”

Public Act 12 of 2014 requires all schools (grades kindergarten to 12) to have a cardiac emergency response plan in place. All of our schools currently have an existing cardiac emergency response plan and have taken additional steps to be prepared for a cardia emergency.

In order for a school to receive a MI HEARTSafe designation, it must perform at least one cardiac emergency response drill per year; have a written medical emergency response plan and team; have current CPR/AED certification of at least 10 percent of staff; have accessible, properly maintained and inspected AEDs with signs identifying their location; and ensure pre-participation sports screening of all student athletes using the current physical and history form endorsed by the Michigan High School Athletic Association.

For more information about the MI HEARTSafe Schools program, visit www.migrc.org/miheartsafe.

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About David Britten

Retired U.S. Army Officer, former elementary, middle and high school principal, currently serving as a public school superintendent.
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