Heart screenings to save lives

Pictures remind April Harris when her daughter Kara had heart surgery when she was six months old.  Kara is now 14 and may need surgery again. 

A free heart screening with a cardiologist showed a problem with one of Kara's heart valves. Her mother said, "If it had been another year at that point they would not have been able to diagnose whether a leakage in the valve was becoming more severe or had it stayed the same."

The Jessica Clinton MVP Foundation in Saint Lucie County provides the heart screenings for kids including Kara.

The foundation gets help from volunteers and a cardiologist.

Cheryl Lalloo said, "When he does the EKG he is able to read them right there and see whether or not an echocardiogram is needed and then he able to give the parents advice on what to do."

Almost 10 years ago Cheryl's teen daughter Jessica died from a heart defect. The family did not know she had a heart problem.

Since then Cheryl has labored to get defibrillators in schools. She succeeded. Since October she has been  providing free heart screenings with help from a cardiologist.

"We did about 247 students and then 12 came back abnormal and then we had four that needed to be referred to a cardiologist."

Her husband Ray said, "The amount of people that we had originally planned was about 200 people, we had 247 and we were turning away people towards the end and we really don't want to turn away anyone if we can." Heart screenings that are helping students like Kara.

Jessica Clinton MVP Foundation

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