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health checks

Is your heart healthy? Do you need a Health Check to find out?

As part of National Heart Month, Salveo Healthcare are delivering NHS Health Checks in their pharmacies in the weeks commencing 10th March. These health checks identify those at risk of heart disease and also stroke, diabetes, kidney disease and certain types of dementia. You are eligible for a free health check if you are aged between the ages of 40 and 74 and have not already been diagnosed with one of these conditions. It’s important that you find out if you’re at risk, the earlier the better and then we can help support you to stay healthier for longer!

National Heart Month is taking place during February. Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) is the single biggest killer in the UK and there are about 2.3 million of us living with this disease. Every single one of us has a heart which means every one of us is at potential risk.

Your local Salveo Pharmacy is working to help you find out whether you are at risk of heart disease, but also other conditions such as stroke, diabetes, kidney disease and certain types of dementia. As part of the NHS Health Checks service we are asking everyone between the ages of 40 and 74, who has not already been diagnosed with one of these conditions or have certain risk factors to come and see us. We will perform a check to assess your risk of one of these conditions and then we will give you support and advice to help you reduce or manage that risk.

We will be performing these NHS Health Checks in your local Salveo Pharmacy* in the weeks commencing 10th March. Come and see us, there’s no need to make an appointment – it’s quick and easy for you.

It’s important that you get a check sooner rather than later – the earlier the better! Once you know whether there’s a health problem then we can work with you to identify self-care tips and to signpost you to other health and social care support in the community.

Dr Bora, a local GP says, ‘Pharmacists have a huge role to play in today’s healthcare. Unfortunately to date, this has remained an underutilised resource. As a part of the joint working I would like to see the Pharmacist play a much bigger part. The delivering of NHS Health Checks is a major step in this direction. As a GP and the Chairman of the Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley CCG I am looking forward to working together for better outcomes for our patients’

Salveo pharmacies can be found at:www.salveohealth.co.uk

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main copy.qxdWith Valentine’s Day approaching, it’s time to think about your heart.

NHS Medway Commissioning Group (CCG) is encouraging people to consider their lifestyles during February’s Healthy Heart Month. Making simple changes to diet and exercise can reduce the risk of developing coronary heart disease. In Medway there are 7,500 people diagnosed with the disease, but it’s thought to affect many more.

Coronary heart disease (CHD) is usually caused by a build-up of fatty deposits on the walls of the arteries that surround the heart. This can make coronary arteries narrower and restrict the flow of blood to the heart which increases the risk of heart attack. People are at higher risk if they:

• Smoke
• Have high blood pressure (hypertension)
• Have a high blood cholesterol level
• Do not take regular exercise
• Have diabetes

Other risk factors include being obese or overweight and having a family history of CHD. This risk is increased if someone has a male relative with CHD under the age of 55 or a female relative under the age of 65.

People from an African Caribbean background have a higher risk of high blood pressure than all other ethnic groups in the UK. Coronary heart disease rates are at their highest in South Asian communities.

The CCG’s clinical lead for long-term conditions, Dr Chris Markwick, said: “We’re urging everyone to think about their lifestyle and their heart in February.

“Are there things you can change to help you have a healthier heart? Can you quit smoking, lose weight, or be more active? How about trimming the fat from meat or grilling instead of frying? If so, there’s no better time to do it than now.”

Things you can do to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels include:

• Eating a balanced and healthy diet – and going easy on salt
• Avoiding eating too much food that contains saturated fat, such as cakes and biscuits, cream and hard cheese
• Being more physically active
• Keeping to a healthy weight
• Quitting smoking
• Reducing alcohol consumption and sticking to recommended guidelines
• Keeping blood pressure under control
• Cutting down on sugar – too much sugar in the diet can increase the chances of diabetes which will, in turn, increase the chances of developing CHD.

Healthy Heart Month runs from 1 to 28 February. For more information about heart disease, visit the NHS Choices website www.nhs.uk or the British Heart Foundation website www.bhf.org.uk.

If you’re concerned about your heart, visit your GP.

Around 40,000 people across Medway are diagnosed with high blood pressure, and the NHS believes many more may not know they suffer.

NHS Medway Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) predicts there may be as many as 65,000 people in total with high blood pressure across the Medway towns and is urging people to get tested and ‘know their numbers’. Read More

John Getley with wife Katrina Getley and granddaughter Olivia aged 13Local man John Getley who has recently recovered from a stroke is encouraging other stoke survivors to attend a new support group which meets for the first time in Medway in September. More

You could save a life by simply checking a pulse. That’s the message from NHS Medway Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) as it launches the PACT campaign to encourage people to check their pulse once a year. As well as checking your own pulse, think about checking that of loved ones as well, says GP Dr Peter Green, NHS Medway CCG’s Chief Clinical Officer. A good tip is to pick a month – perhaps the month before a birthday – and check it every year during that month. By checking your pulse you may be able to pick up heart rhythm disorders that can cause strokes. More

The Stroke Association is calling on South East people to get their nominations in for the Life After Stroke Awards (LASA) before the closing date on 1 March. With over 170,000 people living with the effects of stroke in the South East, the charity is seeking nominations to honour the stroke survivors, carers, organisations or groups who have shown dedication, determination and courage in the world of stroke.

The ceremony will take place at London’s Dorchester Hotel on 26 June 2013. Nine categories including Adult Courage, Creative Arts and Fund-raiser of the year will be presented by a host of celebrities.

This year the charity is welcoming the first patron of the awards, ‘Apprentice’ star Karren Brady. Karren said; “I was in danger of having a stroke myself and so this is a cause that is very close to my heart. I’m still at very high risk and know how frightening the condition can be. A stroke happens in instant but its effects last a lifetime. The Stroke Association is doing great work supporting people affected by the condition and celebrating life after stroke. “I am thrilled and delighted to be the first LASA Patron and am calling on everyone affected by stroke to nominate someone they know for these very special awards.”

Celebrities attending the event included TV’s Angela Rippon, rugby star and stroke survivor Michael Lynagh and Olympic medallist Shelley Rudman. Katherine Staley, from the Stroke Association said: “As stars of stage and screen are being honoured for Oscars, BRITs, Grammys and BAFTAs, this is the chance to shine the spotlight on stroke survivors, their carers and professionals working in the world of stroke to celebrate some of the amazing achievements made.”

You can make your nomination online at http://www.stroke.org.uk/LASA. Alternatively, you can call 0207 566 1540 or email lasa@stroke.org.uk and we can send you a form in the post.

Thousands of people in the South East(1) are at risk of stroke because they fail to recognise the signs of a Transient Ischaemic Attack (TIA, also known as mini-stroke), according to the findings of a new poll(2) launched today on World Stroke Day (29 October 2012). More

A new campaign to help make us aware of our blood pressure starts in September.

Heart nurses in Medway are calling on local people to get their blood pressure tested during national Know your numbers! week, which kicks off on 10 September. The cardiology team at Medway Community Healthcare is backing the campaign, led by the Blood Pressure Association, which encourages adults to get their blood pressure tested at least once every five years. More

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