Thousands of people in south west Essex have received a free NHS Health Check,
latest figures show.
More than 6,700 people took advantage of the check – which is offered at selected
GP surgeries and pharmacies across the area – during 2009/10.
Aimed at 40 to 74 year olds who don’t have an existing diagnosis of heart disease,
stroke, diabetes or chronic kidney disease, the check assesses your risk of
developing these diseases so that action can be taken to reduce the risk where it is
It is based on straightforward questions and measurements, such as age, sex, family
history, height, weight and blood pressure. There is also a simple blood test – usually
a pin prick – to measure your cholesterol level.
Following the check, you will receive free personalised advice about what you can do
to stay healthy.
Mark Ansell, Associate Director of Public Health at NHS South West Essex, says: “It
is excellent news that so many people in south west Essex have received a free,
comprehensive NHS Health Check.
“The check is like an MOT for the body and is designed to pick up early someone’s
risk of these four diseases – often before they have symptoms.
“Establishing someone’s risk of these diseases, which together are the largest cause
of death in the UK, means the NHS can give them the support they need to lower
their risk at the earliest opportunity – which is an essential part of our agenda to
prevent these diseases occurring in the first place.”
As well as some GP surgeries, around 20 pharmacies in Basildon and Tilbury
offered the free check – and more pharmacies in other areas are expected to offer
the service later this year. This means you can get a health check at a convenient
time and place, as most pharmacies are open throughout the week, at weekends
and some late in the evening.
Participating GP surgeries and pharmacies will be displaying the distinctive NHS
Health Check imagery. A full list of participating pharmacies is available at
www.swessex.nhs.uk or by calling our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on
freephone 0800 587 9159. You can book directly with the pharmacies involved or
online at www.swessex.nhs.uk