Health MOTs 'patchy'14th December 2011
Heart UK has said primary care trusts have been "slow and patchy" in providing health MOTs for people over 40.
NHS Health Checks are meant to allow doctors to identify heart disease by taking patients' blood pressure and cholesterol readings.
The system is intended to be completely up and running by 2012/13.
The charity carried out a Freedom of Information request in September this year to find out how many PCTs were running the checks.
They said 112 out of 152 trusts responded, which was a representation of 74% of the trusts.
The responses showed that nine trusts had not performed any checks this year and many were not carrying out enough to reach the target of checking a fifth of 40-74-year-olds in their area.
The East of England came top of the list for the number of health checks performed, with an average of 8,946 om 2010/11.
The South East Coast came bottom, with only 732 health checks over the year.
The nine PCTs which had not performed any checks were:
- South Gloucestershire PCT
- Bexley Care Trust
- East Riding Of Yorkshire PCT
- Eastern and Coastal Kent PCT
- Calderdale PCT
- Milton Keynes PCT
- Shropshire County PCT
- West Kent PCT
- Sutton and Merton PCT
Heart UK's chief executive Jules Payne said: "Tackling heart disease must be a priority for primary care trusts and undertaking health checks is a cost-effective and straightforward way of picking up risk factors for heart conditions before it is too late."
"The health check programme is under threat and not being implemented uniformly across the country and action must be taken to ensure it continues to save lives and public money."
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Title: Health MOTs 'patchy'
Author: Jess Laurence
Article Id: 20584
Date Added: 14th Dec 2011