HCF brings free heart health checks to the NSW Central Coast
10 September, 2018 – HCF members with extras cover are being encouraged to head to HCF’s Erina branch for a free heart health check, courtesy of the health fund’s partnership with the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute.
The Victor Chang Health Check Booth is a walk-in service and will be available at the Erina HCF branch from the 17-19 September. It offers three on-the-spot checks in a quick 10 minute session – blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar.
HCF, Australia’s largest not-for-profit health fund, has been partnering with the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute since 2011 to offer members quick tests to check heart health risk factors. Over 65, 000 Australians – over 73% who are HCF members - have been tested at the Health Check Booths across Australia.
Heart disease continues to be a major health priority in Australia. Every 12 minutes an Australian dies from cardiovascular disease.i In New South Wales, over 368,000 people are affected by heart disease.ii
Data has shown that the Central Coast region of NSW has higher than average cases of cardiovascular disease. Compared to the state average of 21.5%, the prevalence of cardiovascular disease in the Central Coast region is around 31.1%.iii
HCF Erina Customer Service Manager, Lydia Bell, says this is an accessible way local members can have a quick heart health check without the need for an appointment.
“We had over 300 members come to our branch for a heart health check last year and over 65% of people did not know their blood pressure, cholesterol or blood sugar numbers. In fact, close to half of the members that took part in the free health check last year were advised to see their GP to get more advice on their higher-than-normal levels,” said Lydia.
“It is important for people to have access to free community program that may help them become more familiar with their blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar readings – especially as they are all linked to heart disease. We hope this program triggers more people to be more aware of their heart health.”
Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute is a not-for-profit dedicated to finding cures for cardiovascular disease.
Tips for a healthy heart
According to the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, there are some simple ways that Central Coast residents can maintain a healthy heart:
- Eat a well-balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables and choose lean meats and poultry.
- Cut down on salt.
- Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise every day.
- Curb your alcohol intake. No more than one or two standard alcoholic drinks per day is recommended.
- Quit smoking.
- Know your risk factors for heart disease.
- See a doctor if you have a family history or concerns about your heart health.
i Data sourced from the Heart Foundation. Heart disease in Australia. Access data via https://www.heartfoundation.org.au/about-us/what-we-do/heart-disease-in-australia
ii Data sourced by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. National Health Survey 2014-2015, New South Wales. Access data via http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/by%20Subject/4364.0.55.001~2014-15~Main%20Features~New%20South%20Wales~10002
iii Data sourced from the Heart Foundation. Prevalence of Cardiovascular Disease (CVD). Access data via https://www.heartfoundation.org.au/images/uploads/publications/2014HeatMaps_PrevCVD_NSW.pdf
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HCF, Australia’s largest not-for-profit health fund protecting people since 1932, covers around 1.5 million members with health and life insurance, community care, travel and pet insurance. On average over the last five years, HCF has paid out more cents in every dollar in premiums to members as benefits than the industry average. With over 35,000 specialists participating in its Medical Gap Cover Scheme and approximately 10,000 providers participating in its 100% back More for You programs, HCF gives members access to quality healthcare with no gaps or minimal costs compared to non-participating providers. To empower members to put their health first, HCF also offers a range of health and lifestyle services including its My Health Guardian health management program, mobile Victor Chang Heart Health Checks and My Global Specialist second opinion service. HCF’s national network of retail outlets and Australian-based call centres have earned multi-award winning status. HCF members also have access to low cost, high quality services at HCF Dental Centres. Having contributed $50 million to support the health services research funded by the HCF Research Foundation, HCF is devoted to investing in the future of Australia’s health. To learn more about HCF go to hcf.com.au/about-us