HEART UK Urges Continuation of ‘Vital’ NHS Health Checks

 
LONDON - Aug. 21, 2013 - PRLog -- ·      Significant regional differences in delivery of NHS Health Checks

·      Local authorities urged to undertake NHS Health Checks for all adults aged 40-74 to help in the fight against serious conditions such as heart disease

·      “The suggestion that Health Checks are waste of time is ludicrous” –   HEART UK Chief Executive Jules Payne

 

LONDON, August 21, 2013 – HEART UK, the cholesterol charity, has urged the government to continue to promote the NHS Health Check programme across the nation following calls for the scheme to be scrapped.

 

The Royal College of GPs claimed this week that the health checks were 'a waste of time' and put more pressure on the NHS by leading to unnecessary treatments.

 

HEART UK has lobbied in Westminster on a number of occasions to urge the NHS to offer the health checks more consistently around the country and today underlined its opposition to suggestions that they should be scrapped.

 

HEART UK Chief Executive Jules Payne said: “HEART UK is wholeheartedly committed to supporting NHS Health Checks and we believe that they are vital to ensure the long term health of the nation.

 

“To suggest that these vital Checks are a waste of time is, quite frankly, ludicrous. They offer an opportunity to address risk factors for a host of conditions – including heart disease – before they become a problem and help people to better understand risk factors and how they can address them in part through diet and lifestyle measures.

 

“Tackling heart disease must be a priority for the NHS and local authorities, and Health Checks are a cost-effective and straightforward way of picking up risk factors for heart conditions before it is too late. The Health Check programme is under threat and is not being implemented uniformly across the country and action must be taken to ensure it continues to save lives and public money.”

 

Free health checks have been offered to the over-40s by the NHS since 2009 and while some regions have been proactive and innovative in their approach, others are yet to implement the Health Checks programme.

 

HEART UK believes that the NHS Health Checks, if universally pursued throughout the country, engage the public in health prevention by:

·         offering health checks in a variety of settings, not just the GP surgery

·         identifying potential risk factors for vascular disease

·         providing individuals with information to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease through

 lifestyle changes

·         reducing their risk of cardiovascular disease through treatment where necessary

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS

About HEART UK

HEART UK was formed in 2002 following a merger of The Family Heart Association (FHA) and the British Hyperlipidaemia Association (BHA).

 

HEART UK - The Cholesterol Charity - promotes healthy hearts and better lives by:

·           helping and supporting individuals, families and health professionals to understand and control cholesterol conditions and other heart risks

·           promoting education and research to improve identification, prevention, treatment and care of cholesterol and lipid conditions

·           working in partnership with government, the NHS, industry and other charities

·           promoting best practice in addressing inherited and non-inherited cholesterol conditions

 

Six out of 10 adults in the UK have raised cholesterol. Over 120,000 people in Britain have a form of inherited high cholesterol called Familial Hypercholesterolaemia (FH) which can cause premature death as those as young as 30 – and only 15% of those with the condition are known.

 

Please contact: HEART UK helpline - 0845 450 5988 or visit www.heartuk.org.uk

 

For media inquiries please contact:

David Alexander, Calacus PR on 07802-412424 or david.alexander@calacus.com

Kourtney Shaw, Calacus PR on 07731-769269 or kourtney.shaw@calacus.com

Gemma Mejer, Calacus PR on 07730-766195 or gemma.mejer@calacus.com

 

 
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