Heartbeat of Football was founded in 2016 to create a greater awareness in the heart health space via the football family.
Football NSW has an MOU with HOF who have engaged with all levels of the game.
In 2019, the Charity has conducted 11 heart health testing days with four more to come this year including the Springwood United FC Presentation Day, Mike Cockerill Cup, Marc Arcuri Cup and Jason Connolly Cup.
More recently HOF conducted testing, education and awareness sessions with Blacktown City FC, Marconi Stallions FC, Kuringai & Districts Referees Association as well as the NPL NSW Men’s Grand Finals at BankWest Stadium.
HOF has now tested over 1,100 people since 2016.
It’s a three-part test conducted by Victor Chang nurses involving blood pressure, sugar and cholesterol readings which are presented to everyone on the spot.
This year 36% of those tested have been advised to see their GP for further consultation.
This is an increase on last year’s figures.
In fact, at BankWest Stadium it spiked to a record 54%.
“That day we didn’t test any players but the general public which included many prominent coaches and former players like Steve O’Connor, John Calleja and Tony Basha,” HOF Founder Andrew Paschalidis said.
“It was an alarming overall reading and tells you how serious this issue is. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death and disease in Australia.”
Among those tested was Gino Marra, the Southern Districts Association Secretary and Deputy Chairman of new A-League franchise Macarthur FC.
“Our Macarthur FC Marquee was next to the HOF Marquee at BankWest Stadium so it was a no brainer to get tested,” Mara said
“My results were high and I have gone to see my doctor. Now I need to take calcium tests.
“It’s funny but when you are told there might be a problem you all of a sudden start to feel it when it was always there – shortness of breath and headaches – but have done nothing about it. I commend Heartbeat of Football for this initiative,” Marra added.
Heartbeat of Football is blessed to have an amazing team of volunteers which also includes a Medical team boasting the likes of eminent sport scientist Dr Craig Duncan, Professor Jamie Vandenberg (Victor Chang), leading cardiologist Dr Shiva Roy and Dr Jeff Steinweg, the former FFA Head of Medical.
In 2020 HOF is aiming to double its testing days in NSW and also launch in Victoria.
Despite the off season now upon us remember anytime is a good time to go and get a checkup at your local GP.
In the meantime HOF is staging its Annual Golf Day on FRIDAY, OCTOBER 11 at Bankstown GC. Feel free to contact Andy Paschalidis for more details – [email protected] – 0412184048