Over 100,000 North Yorkshire residents miss vital health check
More than 100,000 people in North Yorkshire have missed out on a vital health check that spots early signs of several life-threatening conditions.
Adults aged between 40 and 74 in England should be invited for an NHS health check-up by their local authority every five years.
The check is designed to spot risk factors and early symptoms of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, kidney disease and dementia.
Public Health England estimates that there are 194,400 people in North Yorkshire who were eligible for the check in the five years to June 2019.
Of these, just 38.3% attended an appointment during that time – meaning 119,900 went without. However, the figures show at least 37,746 of them were never sent an invite in the first place.
They joined 10 million others across England who also did not have an appointment.
Nikki Joule, policy manager at Diabetes UK, said it was extremely concerning so many were not benefiting from the check, putting them at risk of suffering the “devastating and costly complications” of diabetes in the future.
Councils are legally required to try to improve the uptake rate each year.
In North Yorkshire, the take-up rate fell last year. Of the people invited for a test between April and June, 49.5% took up the offer, compared to 53.8% the previous year.
Ian Hudspeth, chairman of the Local Government Association’s community wellbeing board, said councils wanted to do more to improve uptake, particularly among high risk groups, but warned more money was needed.
Jamie Waterall, national lead for the NHS Health Check at Public Health England, said: “The number of people attending an NHS Health Check during the first quarter of this year, from April to June, is up 10% on the same period last year – the highest it has ever been since 2015/16.
“The check is quick and easy, providing a world leading prevention programme, and years of ill health and thousands of lives may have been saved.”