NHS Health Check review could see digitisation of health checks and early action on hearing loss
The Department of Health and Social Care has announced an evidence-based review into the NHS Health Check service, which will strive to provide a more personalised care approach for individuals and take into account age, risk factors and lifestyle.
Currently, the health checks are offered to everyone aged between 40 and 74 to spot the early signs of major conditions that cause early death, such as stroke, kidney disease, heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
However, the checks currently pay little attention to individual risks or health needs.
The review will explore how to improve the system, with a focus on offering more care based on factors such as age, where people live and DNA.
Furthermore, the review will also look at: a special check-up for people approaching retirement age to help prevent future care needs; increasing the range of advice the checks can offer, for example, early action on hearing loss; ways to increase the uptake of health checks; and the digitisation of health checks where appropriate.
Over the last five years, the NHS Health Check programme has identified over 700,000 people at high risk of cardiovascular disease and it has saved an estimated 500 lives each year. However, the Department of Health and Social Care notes that there is potential for people to benefit even more from a more tailored service.
Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Personalised, preventative healthcare is mission critical to the future-fit healthcare service we want to build. We must harness the latest technology and techniques to move away from the one-size-fits-all approach of the past.
“The review we are announcing today will be an important step towards achieving that, helping us to find data-led, evidenced-based ways to support people to spot, manage and prevent risks to their health through targeted intervention.”
Over 14 million people, 90 percent of the eligible population, have been offered an NHS Health Check in the last five years and almost seven million have taken up the offer.