Free sports physicals available

Duval county middle and high school students eligible

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Free sports physicals are available for Duval County high school and middle school students. 

While school does not start until Aug. 24, many students will start practicing August 3rd, they must have a sports physical to play.

To attend the event on Saturday, Aug. 1, students must register with their coach or school athletic director. They will also need to pick up the paperwork needed by the physicians, which require a parent's signature.  Students cannot just show up at the event. 

"They should call their coach or athletic director at their individual school," explained Jim Mackie with the Jacksonville Sports Medicine Program.

"The students will be bused from their schools to Wolfson Children's Hospital and Nemours Children's Clinic.  "Girls will have their physicals completed at Nemours, boys will be at Wolfson," explained Mackie.

These kinds of events are important for children and teenagers who may not have insurance or a primary care physician who can examine them to determine if they are healthy enough to participate in sports.

"In the last several years, during the event, doctors have discovered cardiac conditions in some of the students," explained Mackie. 

Conditions that could have had deadly consequences for these athletes had they been playing sports.

Students should let their doctor know if they have ever had any fainting spells after working out, difficulty breathing, problems with the heat, head injuries or concussions.  These are all red flags that merit further evaluation.

Specialists in nutrition, asthma, cardiology, orthopedics, family medicine, vision and other specialties will be part of the physicals.

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