The final numbers are in and one-in-three people who turned up for a country-wide free health check was found to have high blood pressure, which is a key risk factor for stroke.
Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check, a Stroke Foundation and Priceline Pharmacy initiative, ran between May and June 2017 and delivered 63,211 checks across the country.
This year’s figures are in line with those the Foundation tallied up last year, as 41 percent of men 26 percent of women tested had been urgently referred onto their doctor.
Sharon McGowan, Stroke Foundation chief executive, said the results came as a wake-up call to many, as high blood pressure often has no symptoms.
“Stroke kills more women than breast cancer, more men than prostate cancer and leaves thousands with an ongoing disability,” McGowan said. “There is one stroke in Australia every nine minutes. However, it doesn’t have to be this way, stroke is largely preventable.”
McGowan said some of the ways to protect against stroke include managing blood pressure, getting more active, maintaining a healthy diet, stopping smoking and reducing alcohol consumption.
The Foundation plans to run more free community health checks to identify Australians at risk of stroke. “If we can reduce high blood pressure we will have a direct and lasting impact on the rate of stroke in this country,” McGowan said.
To see the number of stroke survivors and people living with high blood pressure in your region, click here.Do you have an idea for a story?
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