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Department of Health written question – answered on 26th January 2016.

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Photo of Anna Turley Anna Turley Shadow Minister (Cabinet Office)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to promote awareness across NHS trusts in England of preventative measures to reduce the risk of atrial fibrillation-related strokes.

Photo of Jane Ellison Jane Ellison The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

Public Health England’s (PHE) programme on ‘Stroke and vascular dementia prevention for people with atrial fibrillation’ works with key stakeholders to increase prioritisation for the prevention of atrial fibrillation related strokes.

PHE’s National Cardiovascular Intelligence Network contributed to the development of atrial fibrillation intelligence packs to help commissioners to identify where improvements can be made to reduce the risk of stroke by improving the detection and treatment of atrial fibrillation.

The NHS Health Checks best practice guidance recommends that a pulse check is carried out as part of the process of taking a blood pressure reading and those individuals who are found to have an irregular pulse rhythm should be referred to a general practitioner for further investigation.

Recent research shows that, due to the NHS Health Check and appropriate clinical treatment, 2,500 people will have avoided a major cardiovascular event such as heart attack or stroke over the last five years.

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