NHS Health Checks

Prepare yourself for the future and identify ways to improve your health

If you are aged between 40-74 and have not had a stroke or been diagnosed with heart disease, high blood pressure, kidney disease or diabetes then you are eligible for a free NHS health check. Having the health check will better prepare you for the future and will enable you to take steps to maintain and improve your health.

Why should you have an NHS health check?

As we get older the risk of developing illnesses such as heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes, kidney disease and certain types of dementia increases. There are also certain things that will put you at greater risk. Such as:

  • Being overweight
  • Being physically inactive
  • Not eating healthily
  • Smoking
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol

Men and women are both at risk but the good news is that these conditions can often be treated. The NHS health check helps you to identify your risk earlier.

What will happen at the check?

The check will take between 20-30 minutes and will involve the health professional asking you a few simple questions regarding your family history and lifestyle choices which may be putting your health at risk. The health professional will also make a note of your height, , weight, age, sex and ethnicity as well as test your blood pressure. They will also complete a simple blood test to check your cholesterol level.

What will happen after the check?

The health professional will talk you through the results and explain to you what they mean, giving you personalised advice on how to lower your risk and maintain a healthy lifestyle. If the check reveals a high blood pressure or a risk of developing type 2 diabetes you might need some further blood tests to investigate this. The health professional will be able to tell you more. They may suggest some changes to your lifestyle such as stopping smoking or losing weight that would help to reduce your risk. You may also be prescribed further treatment or medication to help maintain your health.

How to arrange your free NHS health check

You do not need to do anything – if you fit the eligible criteria you will be sent a letter from your GP inviting you to book your health check. Even if you are feeling fit and healthy the check is still important because the health professional can advise you on how to reduce your risk of developing health problems in the future.

New NHS Health Check Results Card

The NHS Health Check results card has been designed to support the NHS Health Checks programme in Suffolk; you can download the results card here.

To print the results card in booklet format:

  • Select print option on the pdf viewer
  • Under the properties option, navigate to the setup tab
  • In the middle of the page there is a ‘duplex’ drop down – select ‘open to left’
  • Click on colour printing option
  • Click ok - You will be taken to the main print panel
  • Under the page handling area ensure ‘page scaling’ is set to ‘fit to printable area’
  • Then you are ready to print!

For more information about the free NHS health checks please visit:


Online Training

There is now some online training available for NHS Health Check providers. To access the training please click here.

The NHS Health Check competence framework has been launched replacing the vascular risk assessment: workforce competences. The NHS Health Check competence framework includes the core competences and technical competences required to carry out an NHS Health Check. The framework sets out clear competences required of providers in general practice, pharmacy, community and other settings, with an increased focus on behaviour change skills to improve health outcomes. The updated NHS Health Check competency framework is now available to download here.

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