Health Screenings

What are Healthy Athletes health screenings?

Healthy Athletes is a free health screening and education program for all people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities provided by Special Olympics and volunteer medical professionals for over 20 years. These health screenings help to:

  • Identify urgent medical needs, provide medical referrals and provide care coordination for those with referrals.
  • Provide early detection of chronic health issues and provide medical or behavior change program referrals when appropriate.
  • Provide free prescription glasses and sport goggles, hearing aids and repair, and corrective medical equipment when needed.
  • Provide in-person and classroom training in working with patients with intellectual and/or developmental disability for healthcare professionals and students.
  • Collect health data for the largest database on the health needs of people with intellectual and/or developmental disability in the world.
  • Guide future health and fitness program development and health policy changes.

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Who can participate in free health screenings?

Any person age 8 or older with diagnosed intellectual and/or developmental disabilities can participate in any Healthy Athletes screening. You do not have to compete as a Special Olympics athlete to qualify. These screenings may take place at community centers, in public schools, at medical/healthcare professional schools, or at Special Olympics sport events. You will never be charged or billed to be seen during a screening event.

What type of screenings are offered?

Special Olympics Utah currently offers health screenings and education in 6 different disciplines. A health screening event may include one, several or all of the following disciplines:

  • MedFest (General Medical): Provides a physical examination including medical history, height and weight, blood pressure check, cardiology test, orthopedic tests and an abdominal exam. Sports physicals for those participating in Special Olympics teams are also provided when needed.
  • Special Smiles (Dental): Provides a visual dental and oral health exam, fluoride varnish treatment and oral health education.
  • Opening Eyes (Vision): Provides a vision and eye health exam, as well as free prescription glasses and/or sport goggles for those needing them. For those not receiving prescription eyewear, participants receive a free pair of sunglasses.
  • Healthy Hearing (Audiology): Provides a hearing and ear health screening, as well as free hearing aids and hearing aid repair for those needing them.
  • Fit Feet (Podiatry): Provides an evaluation of foot, ankle and lower leg biomechanics, as well as free proper socks, shoes and/or orthotics when available.
  • FUNfitness (Physical Therapy): Provides physical examination to test flexibility, functional strength, balance and aerobic fitness. Exercise routines are sometimes given to help improve one or more areas tested.

If you are interested in attending a health screening event, or have questions about the specifics of any of these health screenings, please contact us at or (801) 363-1111 ext 106.

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Volunteer for Healthy Athletes

If you are a licensed medical professional or a health professional student who would like to volunteer at our health screening events, please contact our Health Program Manager at to learn more about the program and be connected with the appropriate Clinical Director.

Future Health Screening Development

Special Olympics Utah is in the process of adding three new health disciplines to our screenings, including:

  • Strong Minds (Emotional Health)
  • Health Promotion (Preventive Health and Education)
  • Healthy Young Athletes (Pediatric General Medical)

We encourage any licensed medical professionals in these fields who are interested in volunteering as a Clinical Director to contact our Health Program Manager at or (801) 363-1111 ext 106.