NHS Blood Pressure Checks
- Pharmacy Service
- NHS Blood Pressure Checks
NHS Blood Pressure Checks
What is high blood pressure?
Blood pressure is the force that your heart uses to pump blood around your body. High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is when the pressure of the blood in your arteries is consistently too high.
The standard reading for blood pressure is 120/80mmHg, and anything higher than this could indicate hypertension. High blood pressure is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, and other health problems.
A simple blood pressure check can save your life
6 million people in the UK have undiagnosed hypertension and don’t know it. With early detection, you can prevent heart disease and live a healthier life.
Who is at a higher risk of hypertension?
If you are at risk of hypertension, it's important to get regular blood pressure checks to closely monitor your health.
Who is eligible for FREE* NHS blood pressure checks?
You are eligible for this FREE service if you are:
- An adult over the age of 40 who has not previously been diagnosed with hypertension
- An adult under the age of 40 who has a recognised family history of hypertension
- You are aged between 35 and 39 and have been assessed as eligible for the service by our pharmacist
- You have been referred by your GP for a blood pressure check or ambulatory blood pressure measurement
If you do not fall under any of the categories mentioned above, you can still have your blood pressure checked through our private service. Find out more.
What to expect during a blood pressure check?
A blood pressure check is a simple, non-invasive, and painless procedure. It takes only five to ten minutes and does not need any additional preparation.
Our pharmacist will invite you for a face-to face consultation and your blood pressure will be measured.
Our pharmacist will explain the results and the following steps needed.
If the blood pressure is higher than 140/90 mm/Hg, you will be advised for 24-hour blood pressure monitoring, known as ABPM.
You will be given a copy of your results for your reference.
What is Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM)?
ABPM is a blood pressure test that involves wearing a portable device that measures blood pressure at regular intervals over 24 hours. The device is worn on a belt or strapped around the waist and is connected to a cuff on the upper arm. It takes readings of blood pressure every 30 minutes during the day and every 60 minutes at night.
Our pharmacist will provide instructions on how to use the device and arrange a follow-up appointment to review the readings and discuss the next steps. You will either receive the ABPM monitor to take home for 24 hours or be scheduled for another appointment.
After interpreting your results, your pharmacist will guide you on the subsequent actions, which may involve lifestyle modifications, such as exercise and diet, that can help reduce your weight and blood pressure. In some cases, prescription drugs may also be recommended to manage hypertension or referral to another healthcare professional if needed.
Frequently asked questions
ABPM, short for Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring, is a method of measuring blood pressure at regular intervals over a 24-hour period.
ABPM allows for a more accurate assessment of an individual's blood pressure patterns over a full day.
It involves wearing a small, portable device that is connected to a blood pressure cuff, which inflates at specific times to measure blood pressure. ABPM records multiple readings of blood pressure and computes an average value.
Your pharmacist will interpret the collected data in your next follow-up session. Based on the results, the pharmacist will advise you on dietary modifications and prescribe medication if necessary. They may also refer you to another specialist.
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