Public Health - Living Well

Health Checks, Vaccinations and Immunisations

NHS Health Checks Poster

Health Checks

If you are between 40 and 74 years old and don't already have heart disease, diabetes, chronic kidney disease or had a stroke, you are eligible to have a Free NHS Health Check at your doctor's surgery.

Everyone is at risk of developing heart disease, diabetes or kidney disease. The good news is that these conditions can often be prevented - even if you have a history of them in your family.

  • NHS Health Checks are free, quick and easy
  • Your NHS Health Check will assess our risk of developing heart disease, diabetes or kidney disease
  • You will be provided with simple practical and realistic steps to help you reduce your risk and stay healthy for the future

An NHS Health Check aims to help you lower your risk of four common but often preventable diseases: heart disease, stroke, diabetes and kidney disease. It’s for adults in England aged between 40 and 74 who haven't already been diagnosed with any of those four diseases.

The checks will be offered in GP surgeries.

When will I be invited?

  • You will be invited in the month of your 40th, 45th, 50th, 55th, 60th, 65th and 70th birthdays
  • You should then contact your GP surgery to arrange a convenient appointment
  • In the meantime, if you're worried about your health, contact your GP in the usual way

Look out for your invitation in the post!

The check will take about 20 minutes.

  • You will be asked some simple questions, for example, about your family history and any medication you are currently taking
  • We will record your height, weight, age, sex and ethnicity
  • We will take your blood pressure
  • We will do a simple blood test to check your cholesterol (this might be done before the test, ask the receptionist when you book your appointment)
  • We will ask a few simple lifestyle questions  

What happens after the check?

  •  You will be taken through your results and told what they mean
  • You will be given personal advice on how to lower your risk and maintan a healthy lifestyle
  • You may be advised about other services to help you maintain your health
  • You may require additional tests and treatment or medication may be recommended 

How the NHS Health Check will help

Once the NHS Health Check has shown you your risk of developing heart disease, stroke, type two diabetes or kidney disease, you'll find out what you can do to reduce your risk. That may mean lifestyle changes such as eating a healthier diet, cutting down on alcohol, or increasing the amount of physical activity that you do.

There are some risk factors for these four diseases that can't be changed, for example, your risk increases with age. But there's a lot you can do to reduce your risk:

  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Be physically active
  • Eat a healthy and balanced diet
  • Don’t smoke

If you're at higher risk, those changes may be combined with medical treatments, such as medicines to lower raised blood pressure or cholesterol. You may be offered NHS support to help you stop smoking or lose weight.

These changes can help you to improve your health and prevent a disease that may otherwise have developed. NHS Health Check is expected to prevent 1,600 heart attacks and strokes a year and save 650 lives.

Vaccinations

Apart from clean water, vaccination is the most important public health intervention in the world. Find out more on this by watching this NHS Choices video on Vaccinations.

On the Isle of Wight, there are lots of health professionals who are involved in vaccination. They include: practice nurses, midwives, health visitors, school nurses, and community pharmacists. You can speak to them for advice relating to vaccinations that you should have based on your age and risk factors that make you more susceptible to preventable infections such as medical history, occupation, or your travel plans.

For more information about Immunisation, we recommend you visit the NHS Choices website by clicking here.