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Healthy Heart initiative- a success story

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In a Healthy Heart initiative, LiveWire advisors and health professionals have teamed up to continue to offer advice and run free blood pressure checks and screenings.

Warrington NHS cardiologist Dr. Ahmed Farag and Paul Corless, Senior Cardiac Advisor at LiveWire, have joined forces in a series of free events designed to prevent and diagnose heart issues.

Warrington residents have been given the chance to seek advice on keeping their heart healthy at free events being run by LiveWire’s Lifestyle team.

LiveWire advisors and health professionals including Warrington Hospital cardiologist Dr Ahmed Farag and representatives from the Eric Moore Health Partnership and British Heart Foundation were on hand at a recent free drop-in event at Orford Jubilee Neighbourhood Hub. In a series of drop ins over 200 people have been checked with several being referred to the relevant places for their particular symptoms.

Residents are invited to come along and learn more about heart health.

People coming along are given a quick quiz to work out their ‘heart age’, receive stop smoking and other general fitness tips – and there is also a free blood pressure and atrial fibrillation (AF) checks.

Atrial fibrillation is a heart condition that causes an irregular and often abnormally fast heart rate. Sometimes atrial fibrillation does not cause any symptoms and a person who has it is completely unaware that their heart rate is irregular.

AF increases the risk of stroke and heart attack so having it identified is a potentially life-saving move. A similar event held by LiveWire last year saw over 100 people screened, with three being diagnosed as having AF.

Paul Corless, Senior Cardiac Advisor at LiveWire, said: “It’s very important that you have your blood pressure and pulse checked regularly, especially if you have a family history of heart disease. High blood pressure can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke and not everyone can show symptoms.”

“Simple ways to reduce your blood pressure are to lose weight, reduce alcohol consumption, eat a healthy diet, exercise and reduce your salt intake. The LiveWire Lifestyle team can help you achieve this.”
“Our events are open for anyone to come along for a blood pressure check, pulse check and advice about reducing your risk of a heart attack.”

In his own spare time Dr. Farag has set up WHH SmartHeart and was the winner of the inaugural Hospital Hero prize for his delivery of crucial health advice to almost 3000 school children across Warrington.

Visiting the schools and speaking with children about the benefits of a healthier lifestyle the cardiologist has received over a thousand feedback forms, letters and posters, from school kids, teachers and parents, many of which tell how children have convinced their parents and loved ones to lead a healthier lifestyle, including giving up smoking and eating a better diet.

It is hoped that many of these inspirational pieces of work will be displayed on walls around the town, on billboards and Dr. Farag would even love to see some of them used on cigarette packets.

The doctor explained ” The most important message I have for the children is how bad smoking is for the heart. As 1 in every 3 15 year olds either smoke or have tried smoking it is important to get the message across to the kids at an early age. I speak to year 4 and year 5 and show the information and facts and what healthy hearts and lungs look like compared to a smokers. For me the best ting is that this message travels home and is given to the parents and grandparents and I have received letters from some telling me they have stopped smoking after being asked to by the 8 or 9 year old child.”

There is a facebook page set up at WHHSmartHeart.

The next free drop in event will be in February around Valentines day at a time and venue yet to be decided.

For more information visit www.livewirewarrington.co.uk/lifestyles or call 0300 003 0818.

Live from Warrington Hospital with Dr. Farag and Paul Corless from Livewire

Posted by Warrington worldwide on Wednesday, November 28, 2018

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