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MissingArrow

Annual Health and Medical Record Replaces Class 1,2, &3 Health Forms

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My apologies to the ladies on the forum. My post should have started out "Ladies and ....."

 

Scoutldr, bring out the rack!!! Or can we just get by in them old platform shoes from the 70's.

 

Vicki, have a girdle I can borrow to get rid of the pop gut? By the way, good idea on the insurance cards. I know I copy our information on the back of the physicals for myself and my sons when we head out somewhere. makes things a lot easier.

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Bob says:

 

Inability to meet the height/weight limit does not mean you cannot be a volunteer in the BSA programs. It only means that you will not be allowed to risk your welfare or the welfare of others by participating in High Adventure activities.

 

The second sentence there does not take into account the sentence on the new health form, "Enforcing the height/weight limit is strongly encouraged for all other events, but it is not mandatory." All that can be said for sure is that the limits will be enforced for "high adventure activities" (which seem to be defined by the 30-minute rule.) There is no way to know what other activities will or will not be subject to the limits. Apparently it will be up to each council, and/or each summer camp director, and/or each district... and/or each CO, for a troop event? How far does it go? And if it is applied to enough events, there are plenty of current volunteers who might have to conclude that they are no longer effective in the positions they now hold.

 

As I said above, I have my doubts about whether this is going to happen anytime soon. But based on the language of the form, I don't see how you can say with any certainty that it is not going to happen. I agree that it is a "good thing" for high adventure activities, but time will tell whether it is going to be applied in situations where it is not such a "good thing."

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Do you always worry about things that haven't happened and may not ever happen? With all the possible things that could encompass how would you ever get anything else accomplished?

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Do you always worry about things that haven't happened and may not ever happen? With all the possible things that could encompass how would you ever get anything else accomplished?

 

Don't you ever stop trying to divert the discussion away from the real issue? NJ has a valid point! Once again, the BSA's wording leaves this open to each council & district! Not a good thing!

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The maximum weight appears to come from the middle of the "obese" section of the BMI chart, between a BMI of 32 & 33. See http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document/html/chapter3.htm for the chart. Maybe we are unusual, but I don't see this affecting our unit much at all. I'm not saying we are fitness fanatics, but making weight isn't one of our problems. I work out regularly so I can keep up with the boys, and do the things I want to be able to do.

 

We have worked a fitness section into our quarterly Honor Patrol competition, with the patrols competing using the exercises in the Tenderfoot requirement. They earn 1 point for each (correct) sit-up in 2 minutes, 3 points for each push-up, 10 points for each pull-up, 1 point for each inch over 36" in the standing long jump, and 1 point for each second faster than 2:30 in the quarter mile run. They go through this contest once a quarter. Ideally, they work on these on their own weekly so they can help their Patrol win the Honor Patrol award. I treat any Scout who can beat my score to an ice cream at Brusters. That's a little financial challenge to keep me in shape, as well.

 

If that chart is causing you to worry, turn lemons into lemonaide. As Stephen Covey says, begin with the end in sight. Think about how much better you will feel, how much healthier you will be, how many more miles you will be able to hike, etc. if you start working out and start eating better. I got on a plan back in February - working out, using a personal trainer, cleaning up my diet - and dropped 10 pounds quickly. Cardio and strength improved a lot. If you have some overweight boys in your Troop, you can be a very real role model to them for losing weight and getting into shape. Given that we live in a country with a severy obesity problem, which leads to skyrocketing health care costs, my hat is off to the BSA for pushing this issue.

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But it has and will continue to happen, at the Sommers canoe base last fall I watched one leader ahead of my group being told that due to his weight and HBP he could not participate with his youth in the canoe trek and should leave or find a local hotel to wait out the week. The staff member telling him this was an EMT who really isn't qualified to diagnois the medical condition especially since the guys own MD certified him fit to go, but it seems they have a checkoff list and certain conditions or any combination of them is an automatic disqualification.

 

Now I understand taking precautions but I think the bases should be upfront before the units spend the money to get there that hey, "this leader is not going to make it through medical inspection."

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Actually, Ed, there is a place for the SSN - it also says it's optional with the ominous caveat that medical treatment may be denied without it.

 

No girdle, ASM. Not enough crunches either, but enough that I get to go if I want to. Lo, I must hurry after them, for I am their leader!

 

Vicki

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BP:

I understand that thumbing out adult leaders for weight and/or blood pressure is a common occurrence at Philmont. Our council had an orientation for all leaders taking scouts to any high adventure base. A lot of it was directed at those going with the council contingent to Philmont. They spent a lot of time warning us that the weight limits were for real and that people with blood pressure issues should cut out caffein a week or two before the trek. These weight limits are nothing new at Philmont and given the altitude, climate and length of trek I can certainly see why.

 

 

 

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The Health and Medical Record we received for Northern Tier has the same height and weight chart as we are discussing, on page 6. It also mentions the total participant load per canoe must not exceed 600 lbs (3 people). Page 11 of the Expedition Planning Guide says anyone with significant hypertension (150/95) should be treated before arriving to reduce their blood pressure as close as possible to normal.

 

If the Scouter showed up with high blood pressure AND was above the maximum weight limit for his height, I don't think he should have been surprised to get pulled.

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Yah, this is interestin', eh? Reworkin' the mess of medical forms was a good idea, IMO. Then there's those added things typical of a committee that went a bit off and didn't consider all the implications. And didn't know how to write with clarity. Biggest problem with vague wording is how it can be used to ambush a scout or a volunteer who shows up expectin' to be able to participate, but is told to go home.

 

Only way I can figure to read the stuff is that it's a 30-minute window to BLS care on a rig (?). In other words, until the ambulance arrives. That still puts an awful lot of "ordinary" scouting in the high adventure category, includin' any backpacking and quite a bit of plop camping in the rural areas of most states. Yah, heck, it probably excludes driving in some areas, especially in winter. Certainly, it seems like it's goin' to apply to Jambo.

 

My guess is it was written by someone in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, or Connecticut ;).

 

Leavin' aside the adults for a moment, what about the kids?. Are we not goin' to be allowing overweight lads to participate in a lot of scouting?

 

I'm also not a fan of "averages" charts that supplant professional judgment. There are weight lifters, like the current governor of California, (72 inches and 240 lbs), who are in fine health but who would bust the BSA's chart.

 

Can't help but think, when yeh add in the photo release, that this was a Jambo PR move. :p At the same time, I do think it's worthwhile pushin' both the boys and the adults to break the U.S. obesity trend.

 

Honestly, though, I think an even more important issue is da stuff in the FAQ that says scouts and adults can't use a physical exam that was obtained for sports. That's goin' to create a lot of grief until families and units get used to coordinatin' and bringing four different health forms to their doc, assumin' they can schedule a single appointment to make that happen.

 

Beavah

(This message has been edited by Beavah)

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Do you always worry about things that haven't happened and may not ever happen? With all the possible things that could encompass how would you ever get anything else accomplished?

 

Bob, when the BSA "strongly encourages" its members to do something, I don't think its unreasonable to anticipate that some of them might actually do it.

 

Brent, I agree with you, and I guess I am a case study. By changing my eating habits (which, in retrospect, were pretty bad), I myself have managed to lose about 40 pounds in less than 2 years, taking me from well over the maximum to well within the "acceptable" range on this chart. ("Recommended" is another 20 pounds or so away, but through more exercise I could probably get close.) I am healthier, generally do feel better, and agree that I am a better role model both for the Scouts and for my own family. (And I don't think it is a complete coincidence that my son (now 17) made similar changes to his own eating habits and has dropped more than 15 pounds, so he's only about 5 over the "recommended" range.) Nevertheless, what I have managed to do is much more difficult for some people. I am concerned about the possibility of a significant disruption in the program if this is not all handled properly and in reasonable stages. I do not have any problem with the "high adventure" aspect if it is clarified to mean what Bob thinks it means, and what I hope it means, but which the BSA's own FAQ seems to contradict. But when the BSA "strongly encourages" the adoption of these limits for "all other events", as I said above, that seems pretty clear and potentially disruptive.

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Missed that Vicki, but the caveat is may be required by medical facilities for treatment. So the BSA isn't requiring it but the medical facility might require it.

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Do you always worry about things that haven't happened and may not ever happen? With all the possible things that could encompass how would you ever get anything else accomplished?

 

Mr. White,

 

C'mon - that's a straw-man argument, and you know it. Folks here aren't being worrywarts. We're just trying to figure out how these new rules and form will affect the operations of the units, districts, councils and camps that we serve in a variety of ways.

 

There's a big difference between worrying about things that haven't happened and discussing things that will happen. The use of this form and the height/weight rules is one of the latter. It is going into effect in 2010, whether we like it or not. Personally, I like it. I'm just extremely disappointed by the shoddy way it's been implemented and explained.

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"people with blood pressure issues should cut out caffein a week or two before the trek"

 

Well, now THAT's sound medical advice. So, after check in, he's free to drink coffee for the remainder of the trek since his BP won't be checked again until he ends up in the ER? Here's an idea...why don't we leave the practice of medicine to those who are licensed to do so.

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Scoutldr:

Just saying that was the advice they were giving at this orientation. The point was that given the increased altitude BP would probably read higher than it did at home and they were giving advice to avoid getting a big surprise at med check... I think the referred to it as a $2000 surprise. They also recommended starting a serious training program to build strength and stamina and dropping weight if you were over the recommended weight. I certainly did not take it as medical advice but rather as suggestions from people who had been there and were familiar with the conditions and the medical check that each scout and scouter was going to be subjected to at PSR.

 

Coffee isn't part of the Philmont rations nor is it on the list of things that they recommend bringing. That being said, I wasn't going to Philmont but on a much less intense high adventure trek (would that be lower adventure?) at lower altitude. I worked on building endurance and dropped a few pounds but I didn't sweat the caffein.

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