FOUR out of five people in Redditch and Bromsgrove are unaware of the link between high blood pressure and stroke according to a new survey.

The Stroke Association and Redditch and Bromsgrove Clinical Commissioning Group (RBCCG) are launching a month long campaign this week raise awareness of stroke and its biggest risk factor.

Local residents can find out more about stroke and get their blood pressures checked at awareness days around the two towns, in the Kingfisher Centre in Redditch on November 26 and December 14 from 10am-4pm and at the Life After Stroke Centre in Bromsgrove on November 27 from 2-6pm.

Rachel Seyler, Stroke Association senior prevention marketing officer, said “Unfortunately many people find out about stroke when it’s too late - once it happens to them or someone they know. A stroke can have a devastating impact and is the UK’s largest cause of severe adult disability in the UK. We hope to make more people aware of the risks of stroke and encourage them to come along to our events to find out more."

RBCCG is made up of 22 GP practices across the two towns. Richard Davies, assistant clinical chair, governing body member and lead GP for the RBCCG finance and performance committee, said: “High blood pressure is the single biggest risk factor for stroke and we’re committed to helping people manage it properly. We hope this campaign ensures people understand what they can do to prevent a stroke and what to do if they suspect someone is having a stroke.”

Around two thirds of people in Bromsgrove and Redditch do not know how to recognise if someone is having a stroke, according to the survey(i). The campaign also aims to raise awareness of the FAST test: FACIAL weakness: Can the person smile? Has their mouth or eye drooped? ARM weakness: Can the person raise both arms? SPEECH problems: Can the person speak clearly and understand what you say? TIME to call 999.

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