The Lord Mayor of Canterbury, Councillor Carolyn Parry, is backing the Rotary Club of Canterbury’s campaign to reduce the number deaths in the district from a stroke. Councillor Parry will be taking advantage of a free blood pressure check organised by the Rotary Club as part of this year’s Stroke Awareness Day.
The statistics are shocking: based on figures for the UK population as a whole, nearly 150 people in the Canterbury District will die from a stroke in the coming year - and more than that number again (180) will suffer the potentially debilitating effects of a stroke.
Nationally, 150,000 people will suffer a stroke in the next 12 months and a staggering 67,000 will die. But, many of those deaths - and the resulting disabilities for those who survive - are wholly preventable.
Once again the Rotary Club of Canterbury - in partnership with The Stroke Association - is spearheading a local campaign to encourage people to get their blood-pressure checked-out as a first step to beating this silent killer. The majority of strokes are caused by raised blood-pressure (hypertension) and a simple blood pressure check taking just a few minutes can often, literally, mean the difference between life and death.
On Saturday 18th April, between 10am and 4pm the Rotary Club of Canterbury is facilitating free blood pressure checks in the city centre as part of Stroke Awareness Week. Boots the Chemist, in the Whitefriars, is hosting the event and nurses from the Chaucer Hospital - plus a doctor - will be on hand to carry out the quick and simple blood pressure checks and offer advice where needed.
At the same event last year, more than 300 members of the Canterbury public had their blood pressure tested. Of that number, 67 (22%) were advised to visit their GP and an additional 8 were considered to be in need of urgent referral.
To get this years Stroke Awareness initiative underway - and as a mark of support - the Lord Mayor of Canterbury will have her blood pressure taken at 10.15am.
Dr David Barton, President of the Rotary Club of Canterbury said: “Stroke is a silent killer, often occurring with little or no warning. All the evidence points to the main culprit being raised blood pressure.” He added: “Evidence also points to a simple blood pressure check being a quick and painless indicator as to whether a person is at risk. Rotary is proud to be supporting such a worthwhile activity”.