Donation for A-Fib Screening Equipment

A 30-second scan to screen adults for atrial fibrillation is now available. The Prairie Heart Foundation at St. Anthony's has received a $5,000 donation from the Andrew Gobczynski Big Heart Foundation to pay for the purchase of five Kardia Mobile devices and five iPads for A-Fib screening.

Atrial fibrillation, or A-Fib, is the most common cardiac arrhythmia that leads to a five times greater risk of stroke. Kardia Mobile is an FDA-cleared personal EKG device that is smaller than a credit card and allows users to take a medical grade single-lead EKG in 30 seconds. The Kardia Pro software platform automatically receives a patient's Kardia Mobile EKG readings, along with home blood pressure readings, activity levels, and weight changes taken with other devices and is compatible with Android and Apple smartphones.

"This technology can help us with stroke prevention through earlier detection of atrial fibrillation," said Dr. Subhashish Agarwal, cardiologist at the Prairie Heart Institute at HSHS St. Anthony's Memorial Hospital. "Prairie's use of Kardia Pro helps us to take a forward-looking approach to patient care."

Kristin Doster of Prairie Heart Institute said the availability of the devices, which can be purchased for as little as $99, lets a person take a reading any time an incident of arrhythmia is suspected, leading to an instant finding of whether the person has a condition that should be checked.

HSHS St. Anthony's Memorial Hospital President and CEO Theresa Rutherford said if the readings are a source of concern, the person  or a friend can phone for an ambulance and the hospital can see whether further action is needed. Rutherford said she hears of people who say, "I just drove myself to the hospital." She encourages people not to do that, but to summon assistance.

For the first time, artificial intelligence creates a personal heart profile for each user by training the app to recognize whether the primary user or a guest is taking the EKG recording. In the future, this heart profile may be used to notify doctors of changes to a patient's heart rhythm in real time, making it easier than ever for doctors to detect changes early and practice preventive medicine.

Big Heart Foundation Chair Stephanie Gobczynski Uebinger said the Foundation wanted to make the donation as a way to expand the partnership with HSHS and the Prairie Heart Institute. Uebinger said, "Our hope is that this technology will help identify area residents who might have previously undiagnosed heart conditions." 

Kelly Sager, Chief Nursing Officer at HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital, expressed the hospital’s appreciation for the donation.  “Having the use of this technology for screening purposes will greatly help with early detection of a cardiac condition that can be treated and possibly prevent future strokes,” she said. “We are grateful to the Andrew Gobczynski Big Heart Foundation for their partnership in improving the health of our area residents.”

The foundation has already partnered with St. Anthony's for an Athletic Heart Screening Program. The Foundation was formed in memory of Andrew Gobczynski, a former Teutopolis and EIU basketball standout, who died at just 33 because of cardiomyopathy, a condition no one knew he had. Now, high schoolers can take advantage of the screening to make them aware of whether they have such a condition.

L-R:  Leon Gobczynski, Becky Gobczynski, Greg Uebinger, Stephanie  Gobczynski Uebinger, Nikki Trupiano, and Leslie Probst of the ABH Foundation; Hospital President and  Theresa Rutherford, President and CEO of HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital; Paul Scherschel, Senior Gift Officer of the Prairie Heart Foundation; Kristin Doster, Executive Vice President or Prairie Heart Institute of Illinois; and Kelly Sager, Chief Nursing Officer of HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital. 


  • Atrial fibrillation is associated with older age (e.g., prevalence increases from 0.2% among adults age <55 years to 10% among those age ≥85 years) and obesity. 

  • Other risk factors: high blood pressure, diabetes, heart failure, prior cardiothoracic surgery, current smoking, prior stroke, sleep apnea, alcohol and drug use, and hyperthyroidism. 

  • 27 percent of AF-related strokes aren’t detected prior to stroke because AF often has no apparent symptoms and is unrecognized by the person with AF.

  • AF-related strokes are more severe and cause greater disability than non-AF strokes.

  • AF-related strokes are largely preventable by treatment with oral anticoagulant drugs. 


2018 Golf Event


A BIG THANKS to all of you who supported our 2018 Golf Event!

Effingham H.S. & St. Anthony H.S.


Students waiting to get their hearts tested.

Teutopolis High School


Students after their hearts were tested.

Effingham Football


Players ready to get their hearts tested.

Effingham High School


Seniors waiting to get their heart tested.

Effingham High School


Students goofing around after their heart testing.


Thank you, James Fultz and WAND TV!

Your $1100 donation to The Andrew Gobczynski Big Heart Foundation  will help provide a lot of heart tests for student-athletes in Effingham County!


Blake and Laura Linders with Stephanie at the 2017 Wine Event.

The Linders family generously donates time and support for the AGBHF every year. Thank you so much, Blake and Laura! 


Stephanie Gobczynski Uebinger with Harrison Smith from Effingham High School.

Harrison earned a $1,000 scholarship in memory of Andrew. Scholarship winners were evaluated on their ability to overcome adversity. Congratulations, Harrison! 

Effingham High School


Sophomores and Seniors ready to get their hearts tested.


Effingham H.S. Sportsbackers


$1000 was donated to the Effingham H.S. Sportsbackers in February 2017

Devin Mette, Teutopolis H.S.


Devin Mette is the 2017 Teutopolis scholarship winner. Congratulations, Devin!

Teutopolis Sportsbackers


The AGBHF presented a check to Teutopolis Sportsbackers in January 2017.

Heart Testing for Student-athletes


In November, 2016, almost 100 student-athletes received heart testing through Sarah Bush Lincoln’s Heart Screening Program.

St. Anthony Booster Club


Donation to the St. Anthony Booster Club in 2016 

Effingham H.S Sportsbackers


Donating to the Effingham High School Sportsbackers in 2016 

2016 Wine Event


Leon, Stephanie, Robin Anderson, and Boris Bonutti, Village Wine and Gifts, 2016 

Sarah Bush Lincoln


Leon, Stephanie, Kim Lockhart, Kim Uphoff, and Dr. Hildebrand, 2016 

2016 Golf Tournament


Winners & Volunteers: Jake Bushue, Troy Greene, Dr. Brian Balda, Todd Thoele, Matt Brown , and Greg Uebinger