Blackpool residents have the opportunity to take up a free five minute health check which could ultimately save their life.
The Altogether Now – a Legacy for Blackpool health trailer will be visiting various locations across the town from Tuesday 5 May.
Altogether Now is the multi-agency crusade to improve the health, wellbeing and lifestyle of people in Blackpool irrespective of age, race, gender or ability. It is a partnership between theNHS in Blackpool (Clinical Commissioning Group and Hospitals Trust); Blackpool Council; and Blackpool Football Club that is unparalleled anywhere else in the country.
The trailer will be at the following locations in Blackpool from 9.30am to 4pm each day.
- Tuesday 5 May — Bickerstaffe Square (next to Sainsburys on Talbot Road)
- Wednesday 6 May — Farmfoods, Devonshire Road
- Thursday 7 May – Asda Suppermarket, Welbeck Avenue
- Friday 8 May — St Johns Square
As May is Action on Stroke Month the trailer team will be inviting people primarily aged between 40 and 60 for a free blood pressure check, in line with NHS Blackpool CCG’s ‘What’s Your Number?’ campaign.
Since the campaign launched, more than 15,000 additional blood pressure checks have been carried out, with more than 3,000 of these people referred for further treatment as a result. One such case was Michael Strother, 39, from Bispham, whose story is below.
Pulse checks will also be available throughout the week. One of these fast, simple tests can quickly identify an irregular pulse in people who may have no symptoms at all. An irregular pulse could be a sign of Atrial Fibrillation which increases the risk of stroke.
The CCG’s ‘How Good Is Your Memory?’ and ‘How Old Are Your Lungs?’ campaigns will also feature, with the team offering free memory screening and lung health checks too.
Staff carrying out all of the tests will explain the results and advise if any further action is needed.
The Blackpool Stop Smoking Service team will also be on hand to give out any advice and provide more information on the range of support available to local residents. Stroke Association representatives will also be in attendance on Wednesday and Thursday to provide specialist information on how to prevent strokes and living with the effects of a stroke.
Dr Amanda Doyle, Chief Clinical Officer at NHS Blackpool CCG, said: “The Health Trailer has proved very popular with local residents in the past. Lots of people have told us that they were very grateful for our support in identifying health problems that they were unaware of, but could then be managed by their own GP.”
WHAT’S YOUR NUMBER CASE STUDY: Michael Strother
When father of four, Michael, 39, was at a local fete with his wife and children, he was approached by the Altogether Now team who were there offering free blood pressure checks.
He said: “When I was asked if I wanted my blood pressure checking I wasn’t too bothered as to be honest I didn’t feel I needed one.
“After checking my blood pressure in both arms, the nurse explained that my blood pressure was dangerously high and advised me to go to the walk-in centre that day.
“When I got to the walk-in centre I saw a doctor who took my blood pressure again and confirmed it was dangerously high. I was put on medication there and then and referred to my own doctor.
“I was surprised at the results as I didn’t feel unwell or have any symptoms nor am I the type of person who gets stressed about anything. I was told though that high blood pressure can affect anybody of any age, shape or form.”
Michael was given a range of tests including blood tests and an electrocardiogram (ECG). The results from the tests were all acceptable although he was told he was slightly overweight.
Michael continued: “My blood pressure is coming down now with the medication I am on but I would urge anybody who has the opportunity to have a blood pressure check to get it done. It’s better to be safe than sorry, its painless and it only takes two or three minutes.”
About one in three people nationally have high blood pressure but because it rarely causes any symptoms, if it is left untreated it can increase the risk of someone having a heart attack or stroke.
For further information about this press release please call the communications team at NHS Blackpool CCG on 01253 956594.