GUEST COLUMN: Health checks are a hit, by Nottingham North MP Graham Allen

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The evidence for public health interventions in Nottingham North is clear; to put it simply people in this area die too soon, and live their lives with a degree of ill-health which is unacceptable

That’s why the Rebalancing the Outer Estate charity, which I set up, has started three innovative projects in the past 12 months to tackle public health issues.

The latest project, aims to give every 60 year old a health MOT to identify lung disease in its early stages enabling people to seek treatment earlier.

We have had the most tremendous support from the health community locally, especially from the Clinical Commissioning Group which oversees the local health and GP service in Nottingham.

They have funded the pilot so local people who are at greater risk can have a MOT paying special attention to the lungs, and if necessary have a follow up scan on site.

The pilot has begun in Bilborough and is already proving highly popular with local people, and if we are happy with the outcome, our aim is to replicate this across Nottingham and possibly much wider and deeper.

The key here is that preventive health is coming to the community which makes it so much easier and more convenient for local patients especially since they have the health checks in the surgery of a local doctor who they know and trust.”

Over 200 people have been invited to have a lung check at Dr Khaliques’s surgery.

Not only those people can take advantage of the follow up scan but the GP can also add a few tests as appropriate, e.g. an NHS Health Check, blood pressure measure and a blood test.

The Public Health Minister Jane Ellison herself was really impressed with this pioneering scheme during her recent visit of Nottingham.

I, myself, had the lung check at Dr Khaliques’s surgery last Friday-it didn’t hurt one bit!