Reducing the number of heart attacks has become a priority in the health service. There is a National Service Framework, which is designed to reduce the incidence of this disease and to encourage the same standards of care across all practices in the country. While this is an ambitious project, the practice is required to be party to this framework and is and has been collecting information over many years about risk factors, which have a bearing upon patients’ future health. People in general are living longer and ischaemic heart disease is a major killer and cause of disablement in later years. Information regarding cessation of smoking, increased exercise and diet to improve risk factors is available. Dietary and drug treatment if indicated for raised cholesterol and blood pressure is important along with identification of patients with undiagnosed diabetes.
We have set up clinics run by the practice nurse for those identified to be at increased risk of CHD and have had a number of patients who have attended a screening clinic. This is in addition to opportunistic assessments of risk during normal surgeries. An appointment initially with the practice nurse without necessarily a formal invitation might be the starting point. Please ask at reception for such an appointment.