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Health Checks

Hi readers, it's Emily, Kerry and William here today, talking about health!

I, Kerry, am just back from a health check in Poundbury. I received the appointment by text from my GP surgery, which I found confusing as I have already had my Annual Health Check. You get this each year if you have a learning disability. I also didn’t understand why it was at a health and wellness clinic in Poundbury, not my GP surgery, who I rang last week. They confirmed that I was being invited to this new health check, which was different to the other one I’d had.

Having been and had this check, plus talking to the nurse, I still am not sure what it was all about. Thanks to google, we have found out!

About 6000 people are eligible in the mid Dorset Primary Care Network for this new, invite only, 40 minute, annual health review, which checks physical, mental and social health. The aim is to catch long term illnesses and conditions before they become more serious, and help those with multiple long term conditions, or those struggling mentally or socially. They first group of people invited are those who’ve had little contact with GP services in the last 6 months.

We learnt it’s a complex eligibility criteria; people who are obese; smokers; have high blood pressure; 3 or more long term conditions; at risk of falls; socially isolated; financially vulnerable. The nurses testing us don’t know how we have met this criteria, which is good.

The results are then sent to our GP surgery who will contact us if they need to, or to signpost us to services which can help. Next week I’ll talk more about my thoughts on the test, but I do think it’s a good thing now that I understand what it’s about!

The writers of the Our View column are supported in their editing by People First Dorset - a charity led and run by people with learning disabilities with support from staff

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