I’m sure you have all seen adverts on TV for the various health screening programmes that are offered free to patients in the UK. If you are eligible for any of the free screening programmes we strongly recommend you take part.
Aortic aneurysm Screening
Men are invited for this screening the year they turn 65. If you are over 65 and have not been invited for this yet please phone the screening programme on 01482 675507. This screening involves an abdominal ultrasound and you will receive your result immediately.
Bowel Cancer Screening
Men and women aged 60-69 will be automatically sent a stool sample screening kit every two years. All you need to do is put your completed sample in the post. Anyone aged 70 and over can request a screening kit by calling the free phone helpline 0800 707 6060
Breast Cancer Screening
Women aged 50-70 are invited for screening every three years. Women over 70 can still be screened if they wish and need to ring the local screening unit on 01904 725 591 to arrange this. If you are anxious or embarrassed about having this test please make an appointment to talk to one of our GPs or nurses.
Cervical Cancer Screening
Women aged 25-64. Between 25 (you can now have your first smear up to 6 months before your 25 birthday) and 49 you will be recalled every three years and between 50 and 64 it is every 5 years. This is a quick and painless test carried out by one of our nurses. Every day in the UK 8 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and 3 women will lose their lives to the disease. Cervical cancer is the most common cancer in women aged 35 and under. Cervical cancer is largely preventable thanks to cervical screening and the HPV vaccination programme. However uptake of cervical screening is now going down year on year.
Early detection is also important in increasing survival rates so educating everyone on the disease, its symptoms and ways to prevent it is key.
NHS HEALTH CHECK
The NHS Health Check is a health check-up for adults in England aged 40-74. It’s designed to spot early signs of stroke, kidney disease, heart disease, type 2 diabetes or dementia. As we get older, we have a higher risk of developing one of these conditions. An NHS Health Check helps find ways to lower this risk.
If you’re in the 40-74 age group without a pre-existing condition, you will receive a letter inviting you for a free NHS Health Check every five years. In the meantime, you may want to try this online Heart Age test.