A free 30-minute health check could change your life – that’s the message from Medway Council’s Public Health Team, which is promoting the NHS Health Check programme in Medway.

The nationwide scheme is delivered locally in Medway by all GP surgeries. So far more than 57,000 people in the target age range of 40 to 74 years have been invited to take part; more than 20,000 people have attended their health check. The five-year programme started in April 2010 and is invitation only, based on date of birth. People invited for a health check are those aged between 40 and 74 years and do not have existing cardiovascular disease (diabetes, high blood pressure, Stroke, TIA, Peripheral vascular disease, heart failure and heart attack).

Health consultants Solutions4health is assisting with the programme in Medway and targeting people in the following wards – Chatham Central, Luton and Wayfield, Peninsula, Gillingham North and South. They will be providing checks at fixed and mobile venues such as Gillingham Aldi, St Nicholas Day Centre, Morrison in Walderslade, Chatham and Gillingham High Streets, Medway Valley Park, Luton and Chatham libraries. More details about where and how to access both the fixed or mobile unit can be found at http://www.myhealthcheckmedway.co.uk

Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Public Health Cllr David Brake said: “These health checks are really important and I would encourage as many people as possible to attend their appointment when they are contacted by their GP surgery or book an appointment at their convenience with the Solutions4health community outreach health checks team. “The NHS Health Check aims to help you lower your risk of four common but often preventable diseases – heart disease, stroke, diabetes and kidney disease.” “The health check is free, and should only take about 30 minutes of your time but it could be the best 30 minutes of your life if the check picks up on a potentially serious health issue.”