Men over 40 encouraged to get their NHS Health Check this Men’s Health Week

Local firefighter, Gabby Heycock, recently benefitted from a free NHS Health Check and is now urging other men in Oxfordshire over 40 to get theirs this Men’s Health Week (12 - 18 June).

Health Checks Oxfordshire is now providing free NHS Health Checks on behalf of Oxfordshire County Council at convenient community-based locations across the county, including libraries.

This is in addition to accessing an NHS Health Check at your GP practice provision, making it easier than ever to get one.

49 year old Gabby from Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service commented: “I wanted to get an NHS Health Check because it gives me the information I can’t know. I’ve got a general idea of how I’m feeling, whether I’m carrying a little bit of weight, how much exercising I’m doing. 

“But there’s some stuff the NHS Health Check tells me that I’ve just got no idea about, such as my cholesterol level and blood pressure. That was the reason I wanted to get one.

“It’s had a positive impact on my mentality around looking after myself and making sure I do that as I get older. You get a real picture of how your heart health is.

“I think people should get an NHS Health Check because you have no idea what’s going on inside your body and it tells you things you just can’t know.

“You get an overall picture of how your heart health is and that supports you in making some lifestyle changes if it’s needed or knowing that you are looking after yourself and you just need to continue with the way you are going. In some cases there might be further follow up with your GP on your blood pressure, or to check you out for type 2 diabetes, but it is better to know about these things earlier to do something about them.”

Councillor Michael O’Connor, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Inequalities, said: “So many of us put off seeing a doctor for various reasons. A health check is a quick and easy way for people over 40 to get a much needed MOT and can help you to lower the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and even certain types of dementia.  

“There’s a choice now to go to your GP surgery or to get one with Health Checks Oxfordshire available at community locations across the county.”

Ian Hiscock, Service Manager at Health Checks Oxfordshire, said: “Health Checks Oxfordshire offer a quick, easy, and confidential NHS Health Check service at various locations in your community and workplaces across Oxfordshire, supporting the catch-up programme.

“They involve a few simple tests and a discussion with one of our expert health coaches about your health and lifestyle to help you make lifestyle improvements so you can live well for longer.”

Find out more about how to get a free NHS health check by visiting the dedicated NHS health checks webpage.

More information

NHS Health Checks are funded by Oxfordshire County Council’s public health team, which exists to improve the health of local people and protect them from preventable health issues – helping local residents live safe and healthy lives and play an active role in their communities.

Everyone eligible, aged 40 to 74 in England, will be invited for a free NHS Health Check once every five years (apart from those already seeing their GP for certain conditions). 

 A health check will take around 30 minutes:

  • You will be asked some simple questions about your family history, whether or not you smoke and how much alcohol you drink.
  • Your height, weight, sex, ethnicity and age will be recorded.
  • Your blood pressure and pulse will be taken.
  • A simple blood test will check your cholesterol level.
  • Your body mass index (BMI) will be calculated. BMI is a measure of whether you're a healthy weight for your height.
  • Your level of risk of developing certain conditions (ie stroke, kidney and heart disease, type 2 diabetes and types of dementia) will be calculated.
  • You will be given personalised lifestyle advice to help you live a longer, healthier life.

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