Bettors in some parts of the country could soon be offered blood pressure checks under a new initiative launched by NHS England.
This new scheme is designed to boost community healthcare and will see 42 integrated care systems bring together GP teams, hospitals and local authorities, among other partners, to plan and deliver services in their area.
Among the plans devised by these new integrated care systems are blood pressure checks in betting shops. These are intended to catch hypertension issues early and thus prevent people from ending up in hospital.
A GP practice in Stockport is currently going into betting shops and offering customers these checks, reaching people who may not typically seek them out.
In Coventry and North Warwickshire, meanwhile, a local sports clubs is offering diabetes and weight management support by taking referrals from GP teams, but also through community outreach.
Amanda Pritchard, NHS England Chief Executive, said these changes will improve local healthcare and cut “red tape,” which she claims will save taxpayers’ money.
“Integrated care systems have the power to truly transform the way that we care for people up and down the country – not only will the NHS provide care when someone is unwell or has an accident but alongside our local government partners, we must also now play an increasing key role in managing peoples’ health so that we can catch more killer conditions earlier and save lives,” Pritchard remarked.
Sajid Javid, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, expressed a similar sentiment, commenting: “We have learned many lessons during the pandemic, particularly following our hugely successful Covid vaccine roll-out, and one of these is that a more joined-up health and care system can help thousands more people get the care they need in the right place at the right time.
“Our Health and Care Act has now established integrated care systems in law, boosting access to care for patients by removing barriers to joint-working, supporting innovative local solutions and giving local leaders more freedom to rapidly fix the issues that matter most to patients.”
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