Middle school and high school students from Des Moines and surrounding communities can receive a free school or sports physical at Des Moines University’s annual physical fair.
DMU has provided free physical exams to local children for years. This year’s event will provide physicals and educational health information to students on Saturday, July 28, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Medical Education Center, 3200 Grand Avenue. Additionally, the physical fair offers free EKGs, if indicated, and other optional services including dental screenings and mental wellness checks. All services are free.
“We know annual health screenings are important and not everyone can afford one. We love giving local families peace of mind that their child has been checked for serious health risks,” explained Melissa Wilder, DMU community relations manager.
The EKGs are pain-free screenings of the heart that take only a few minutes to complete. Certified cardiologists read the results and report any unusual findings for follow up with the child’s physician. Sudden death due to heart problems is rare in young athletes, estimated at one in 200,000. The University’s goal is to reduce this risk even further by screening for potential cardiac problems and abnormalities before the sports season starts.
Students must bring a completed parental consent form and completed physical history forms with them. All students should wear shorts and a T-shirt for the exam to make it easier to do the physical. Females should wear a sports bra.