MARSHFIELD – “We challenge expectations every day. We create community, build confidence, and help athletes realize their full potential,” said Special Olympics Wisconsin Director of Development Joe Seubert.
Security Health Plan and Marshfield Clinic Health System are proud to support Special Olympics Wisconsin, an organization providing Wisconsin athletes an opportunity to demonstrate their physical abilities, courage and skills through sports and competition.
More than 50 years ago, Special Olympics launched a global movement to end discrimination against people with intellectual disabilities. Their work remains focused on inclusion and creating a community that recognizes everyone’s unique ability. Through their Healthy Athletes® program, the organization also provides athletes with free basic health care screenings and education.
“Statistics show individuals with intellectual disabilities often do not receive the health care attention they need,” explained Seubert. “Our impact on the health and well-being of our athletes is significant, in some cases life-saving, by discovering unknown health issues or providing health care that otherwise would not have been available.”
The Healthy Athletes® program gives Special Olympics Wisconsin athletes free screenings in a fun, welcoming environment that removes the anxiety and fear individuals may experience when faced with a visit to the doctor or dentist. They work to improve each athlete’s health and fitness, leading to an enhanced sports experience and improved well-being.
“Since 2001, Special Olympics Wisconsin has conducted over 24,000 health screenings in eight health disciplines. In addition, more than 2,500 health care students and providers were trained in providing quality and accessible care to their patients with intellectual disabilities throughout the state,” said Melissa Schoenbrodt Senior Director of Health Programs for Special Olympics Wisconsin. “Security Health Plan and Marshfield Clinic Health System’s recent contribution will help us continue our work, giving people with intellectual disabilities improved access to health services.”
The Healthy Athletes® program not only provides health services and education to athletes, it also provides training to health care providers on the unique needs of Special Olympic athletes. Health care professionals can then return to their practice with increased compassion and understanding for those with intellectual disabilities.
“Marshfield Clinic Health System and Security Health Plan are pleased to support Special Olympics Wisconsin. We both strive to create healthier communities. Our partnership provides local athletes a forum to showcase their talents and ensures they’re receiving necessary health care services to live long, healthy lives,” said Security Health Plan Director of Population Health Heather Kurtz.
For more information on Special Olympics Wisconsin, visit www.specialolympicswisconsin.