October 25, 2016

The National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) recently invited National Basketball Retired Players Association (NBRPA) members to receive free, comprehensive heart screening exams in Dallas, Texas.

The American Heart Association News covered the NBPA's heart screening event in Dallas where they spoke to NBPA Director of Sports Medicine Joe Rogowski:

“We’ll try to do a city every month and come back once a year,” Rogowski said. “It’s not cheap, but the NBPA and the players think it’s worth it.”

The screening includes a full blood workup, electrocardiogram, echocardiogram, carotid ultrasound and blood pressure check. All the results are recorded on a memory stick for the former player to take back to his doctor. But first he faces a team of cardiologists recruited for the day.

“We go over the results, we talk about diet, we point to getting appropriate follow-up,” said Richard Ammar, M.D., an interventional cardiologist in Denton, Texas. “The message is you’re not immune because you’re an athlete.”

Ammar said the men at the Dallas screening “are pretty healthy, and I’m not surprised. One fellow is a little nervous about something that we’re going to look into further, but in general they’re taking care of themselves.”

Rogowski said that mirrors results from around the country. While most of the former players check out well, he said, “I can’t name names, but they have found things that needed to be addressed.”

At the event, NBRPA Dallas Chapter President Willie Davis spoke to American Heart Association News and told them how valuable the screenings are: “There are some guys who really don’t have good health coverage, and this is huge,” Davis said. “It’s a wonderful gesture by the current guys who want to recognize the people who paved the way for them. We’re just thankful.”

The NBRPA has worked closely with the NBPA to support its effort to provide all members in NBA cities with comprehensive, no-cost cardiac exams. Members are encouraged to attend another screening exam set in New York on November 5 at the NBPA Facility. Members interested in learning more can contact Scott Rochelle at 312-913-9400 or srochelle@legendsofbasketball.com. Members can also read more about the NBRPA’s health screening exams here.

About the National Basketball Retired Players Association
The National Basketball Retired Players Association (NBRPA) is comprised of former professional basketball players from the NBA, ABA, WNBA and Harlem Globetrotters. It is a 501(c) 3 organization with a mission to develop, implement and advocate a wide array of programs to benefit its members, supporters and the community. The NBRPA was founded in 1992 by basketball legends Dave DeBusschere, Dave Bing, Archie Clark, Dave Cowens and Oscar Robertson. The NBRPA works in direct partnerships with the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association. Arnie D. Fielkow is the President and CEO, and the NBRPA Board of Directors includes Chairman of the Board Thurl Bailey, Vice Chairman Dwight Davis, Treasurer Eldridge Recasner, Secretary Nancy Lieberman, Rick Barry, James Donaldson, Mike Glenn, Spencer Haywood, LaRue Martin Jr., David Naves, Johnny Newman and Casey Shaw.