Simple test that saves lives
ACT FAST – Face, Arms, Speech, Time. Fire in the brain, face contorting, arms unable to move, slurred speech – images seen on TV.
Someone having a stroke. How can we prevent this happening?
Last Saturday Rotarians, committed supporters of the “Know Your Blood Pressure” campaign, gave up their time to encourage local shoppers to spare a moment and take a simple test that could save their lives.
Rotary, working in partnership with the Stroke Awareness Association, was helping people to spot the vital signs.
Members of Peterborough Minster and Peterborough Ortons Rotary Clubs could be found outside Tesco in Serpentine Green.
Between 10am and 4pm a steady stream of 181 shoppers had their blood pressure (BP) test taken – men and women of all ages.
Of these 149 left with a smile, confident that their blood pressure was normal.
A further 25 were advised to visit their own GP within a month for a routine follow up.
Amazingly, seven people required an urgent follow up with a visit to their own doctor during the next week being strongly recommended.
Each abnormal blood pressure was double checked by a second medic on duty and all the advice given was completely confidential.
Although the day was wet in Market Deeping a total of 107 people had their BP measured in the two caravans set up in the Rainbow car park outside the Co-operative Store.
Of these 14 were advised to have a routine follow up in the next month and four people advised to seek an urgent appointment with their GP in the next week – 89 people required no further action.
Although the total number of people having their BP measured in Market Deeping has fallen from a high of 217 in 2008, nurses still feel that this is a very worthwhile exercise for the community.
All three Rotary Clubs wish to thank the local doctors, nurses, Rotarian volunteers and the Stroke Association for their support and for making the day possible.
If just one life was saved the exercise was very worthwhile.
Stroke Awareness is very important. The cost to the NHS of assisting people after strokes is extremely high. Anything that can be done to prevent strokes helps people enjoy longer lives. Rotary clubs nationally organise Stroke Awareness Days in shopping centres, community halls, garden centres and schools.
Rotarians outside Tesco, right, a test being administered, above, and Deepings Rotarians brave the rain.
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