Continuing their efforts to raise awareness on cardiac issues and concussions in young athletes, Barnabas Health announced last week the statewide expansion of the Matthew J. Morahan III Health Assessment Center for Athletes.

The Morahan Center opened in 2010 as a resource for young athletes to have access to free and low cost cardiac screenings and baseline concussion testing. These services and techniques will now be offered at all six Barnabas Health facilities throughout the Garden State, in addition to a mobile unit traveling around the state to screen and treat athletes.

"This is the kind of community integration resource that we should be providing to a maximum number of people," said Barry Ostrowsky, President and CEO of Barnabas Health.

Over the last three years, more than 7,000 young Jersey athletes have been screened at the Morahan Center. Ostrowsky says by expanding the Morahan Center's services throughout all of Barnabas Health's facilities, they are making it easier to stay out in front of these potentially dangerous and deadly conditions.

"If we can do these services, I think our aim is to protect our children, treat them if necessary, but make sure their participation is healthy," Ostrowsky said.

It's part of a growing initiative from professional sports leagues on down to bring concussion and cardiac issues to the forefront.

"I think all of this visibility is effective and important," he said. "I think the traction will get even stronger as we go forward over the next six months to a year."

Young athletes are invited to attend any of the following free upcoming screenings from 9 a.m. to noon:

  • Saturday, October 5 at Barnabas Health Ambulatory Care Center in Livingston
  • Saturday, October 12 at the Children’s Hospital of New Jersey at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark
  • Saturday, October 19 at Kimball Medical Center in Lakewood

Barnabas Health has full information on their website and Facebook page about all programs and services.

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