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NHS Health Checks to be taken on by third sector workforce

NHS Health Checks to be taken on by third sector workforce

NHS England will announce plans today to roll out health checks to more patients using wider local authority and third sector workforces.
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NHS England will announce plans today to roll out health checks to more patients using wider local authority and third sector workforces.

The new drive is based on data, which suggests that health checks could prevent more than 9,000 heart attacks and at least 14,000 strokes over the next three years.

In a joint initiative with PHE, the expansion of NHS Health Checks will increase access to blood pressure testing in the workplace, and using the wider local authority and third sector workforce to carry out health checks in community settings.

Sir Bruce Keogh, the national medical director of NHS England, will say today that closer working between NHS organisations and local authorities will ‘create new opportunities to get serious about prevention and bear down on two of the biggest killers, between them responsible for one in four premature deaths’.

Speaking at NHS England’s Health and Care Expo, he will add: ‘We know how to treat the resulting heart attacks and stroke, but everyone knows that prevention is better than cure.

‘Prevention of these devastating consequences is everybody’s business from our schools, to the food and tobacco industries, to local authorities and the NHS.’

According to PHE data, 5.5m people in England have undiagnosed high blood pressure and nearly half a million have undiagnosed atrial fibrillation, which increase the risk of stroke, heart attack, dementia and limb amputations. 

A study last year found that NHS Health Checks is proving a ‘remarkable success’ having prevented at least 2,500 heart attacks and strokes in England in the past five years.

Duncan Selbie, chief executive of PHE, will say: ‘Scaling up CVD prevention locally is a major part of reducing the overall burden on individuals, families and the NHS, and will help to ensure a person’s health is not defined by where they live’.

NHS England and PHE have written to all 44 regional partnerships tasked with overhauling local health and social care to urge them to improve prevention of CVD.

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