Wednesday, July 20, 2022
For Immediate Release
Rosemount Officer Receives Distinguished Service Award for Heart Health Initiative
Community Resource Officer, Cassie Witt, was recently awarded a Distinguished Service Award for her efforts to bring the Sigma Tactical Wellness program to the Rosemount Police Department (RPD). Sigma Tactical Wellness offers a program for public safety personnel that tests for early markers of coronary issues that traditional medical insurance would not cover. This is significant because Coronary disease is the number one killer of police officers.
“We strive to build a culture that takes care of the people who take care of people,” said Chief Mikael Dahlstrom. “We began putting sincere focus into our officer wellness programs and Officer Witt emerged as a change agent. She is passionate about officer wellness and we are grateful for her leadership in this area.”
Overwhelming evidence indicates that police officers have an increased risk of heart disease and other stress-related physical and mental illnesses. In fact, the life expectancy of a police officer is 22 years less than the general public. This reality has hit the Rosemount Police Department hard over the past 10 years as they grieved the losses of Sergeant James O’Leary and Sergeant Bryan Burkhalter. Both men passed from sudden cardiac arrest within five years of serving their final shifts as police officers, igniting a passion in Officer Witt and prompting her to spearhead the effort to bring Sigma Tactical to Rosemount.
Officer Witt was able to arrange for Sigma Tactical Wellness to test any officer within the Rosemount Police Department that wished to participate. Out of those screened, 32% of officers had concerning inflammation issues, 43% had pre-clinical metabolic issues, 17% had concerning calcium scores at a young age, 13% had markers that indicate a 40% chance of a coronary issue within the next four years, and 40% had evidence of uncontrolled hypertension. Armed with this information, Rosemount Police Department has now implemented changes in their contracts to include regular testing and partnered on a gym membership program with Hope Fieldhouse.
“Sigma has not only supported officers in their own personal wellness journey, but they have helped change the overall culture and approach to wellness in our department for the better,” said Witt. “There is no doubt the knowledge and awareness officers attained through the Sigma program will save lives in our department.”
Learn more about Sigma Tactical Wellness at www.iamsigma.com. Information about the Rosemount Police Department can be found at www.rosemountmn.gov/police.
For More Information Contact:
Lee Stoffel (she/her), 651-322-2078, email@example.com