What is it like going for a Free NHS health check with Healthy You?

Since I’m within the age range (actually, well into it), I thought it sensible to go for one of the Healthy You NHS health checks to spot early signs of stroke, diabetes, and more. I rang the phone number on the poster and spoke to a friendly woman about the checks. She explained what they were and what happened, took me through a few questions to get an idea about my lifestyle and risk, and then discussed appointment times and places. I was surprised that there are lots of convenient venues around Peterborough, so I was able to choose one not too far from me.

On the appointed day I went to the Nene Valley Community Centre, where there is lots of free parking, and the ladies at reception pointed me to the room. Fasihah who conducted the checks (and had sent me a text reminder), was well-kitted out in PPE and I was asked to wear a face mask as well, and the equipment, table and chair are cleaned after every person. Fasihah told me what was going to happen in the visit, then went through a short questionnaire about lifestyle and family history (more detailed than over the phone, but still quick and easy). She did a finger prick blood test which she explained would tell us my cholesterol and blood sugar levels, but it would need to sit for a little time, while she did my blood pressure, height and weight. She entered things into the computer and filled in a booklet for me, then went through all the results right there – blood pressure, activity level, smoking, BMI, alcohol use, cardiovascular risk, pre-diabetes, cholesterol, and my Healthy Heart Range. She said if there is a problem they refer you to your GP right away, though fortunately all mine were in the green zone; it was very reassuring for me to see that my healthy lifestyle is paying off!

I was very impressed that everything along the way was explained to me, including what was being done and why, along with the results and what they meant. The appointment is only 20-30 minutes long and you can get all sorts of great info about healthy lifestyles. I also have the results written in my booklet for future reference (I know they are sent to my GP as well, but it’s nice having something in hand).


Susan Davidson

Digital & Community Engagement Coordinator (Peterborough)

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