Croí teams up with Mayo pharmacies to offer free blood pressure checks in September

Own it, Check it and Sort it as part of Croí’s Third Age Mayo Programme

Did you know that uncontrolled high blood pressure can increase your risk of heart disease and stroke? The Croí Third Age Mayo programme, which aims to promote healthy cardiovascular ageing, is delighted to partner with local pharmacies across Mayo for the month of September to offer free blood pressure checks to anyone who has not had their blood pressure checked in the past year, with a particular focus on those over 55 years of age.

High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, occurs when the force of the blood flowing through your blood vessels is consistently too high. This causes many harmful effects on the body and if left untreated can significantly increase your risk of having a heart attack or stroke. High blood pressure typically has no symptoms – the only way to find out if you have high blood pressure is to have it checked regularly (at least once a year).

We’re delighted to be back in Mayo this September following the success of our May Measurement Month campaign. The prevalence of high blood pressure in Ireland, particularly for people over the age of 55, is startling. At last year’s blood pressure measurement event in Mayo, 51% of people had elevated blood pressure, and only 37% of people taking medication for high blood pressure had a reading that was under the recommended level. Early detection is key and will save lives”, says Dr Lisa Hynes, Croí’s Head of Health Programmes.

From September 1st  – 30th, over 30 pharmacies across Mayo will be participating in this initiative. Visit one of the participating pharmacies for your free blood pressure check and ‘Own it, Check it, Sort it!’. For the latest list of participating pharmacies, please visit croi.ie/thirdagemayobp.

New Croí ‘My Blood Pressure’ Programme
Members of the public found to have high blood pressure will be offered information and advice, as well as the opportunity to take part in a free Croí blood pressure management programme delivered by the Croí multi-disciplinary health team.

The participating pharmacies include:

Achill – Molloy’s; Balla – Life Pharmacy; Ballaghaderreen – Molloy’s; Ballina – Molloy’s (Bunree Road), Molloy’s (Garden Street), Kilroy’s, Mulligan’s; Ballindine – Healthwest; Ballinrobe – Hynes, Ryder’s Pharmacy; Ballyhaunis – Curley’s, Healthwest; Bangor Erris – Lavelle’s; Belmullet – Lavelle’s, Reilly’s Total Health; Castlebar – O’Donnell’s, Moran’s, Treacy’s, Staunton’s; Charlestown – Colleran’s; Claremorris – Haven Pharmacy, Aran Health Pharmacy, Lloyds; Crossmolina – Molloy’s; Foxford – Heneghans; Kilkelly – Life Pharmacy; Killala – Lavelle’s; Kiltimagh – Heneghans; Knock – Life Pharmacy; Louisburgh – Staunton’s; Westport – O’Connell’s, O’Donnell’s, McVann’s Care Plus, Treacy’s.

Croí joins with Midwest radio to highlight free blood pressure checks in September

Pictured is Midwest radio commentator Michael D McAndrew ‘checking’ the blood pressure of match analyst Martin Carney ahead of the All-Ireland Final in Croke Park on Saturday, September 11th. Pic Conor McKeown

The Croí Third Age Mayo project and Midwest radio’s GAA commentators Michael D McAndrew and Martin Carney are joining forces to highlight the fact that free blood pressure checks are available in numerous pharmacies across Mayo to people over 55 years of age who have not had their blood pressure checked in the past year.

Croí is partnering with a number of pharmacies across Mayo throughout September offering free blood pressure checks as part of the Croí Third Age Mayo project. This initiative is specifically designed to promote and support the cardiovascular health and well-being of the over 55 population in county Mayo.

Members of the public found to have high blood pressure will be offered advice and information, as well as the opportunity to take part in a free blood pressure management programme, delivered by the Croí multi-disciplinary health team.

Log on to www.croi.ie/third-age-mayo-bp for the full list of participating pharmacies in Mayo.

Advice for people managing High Blood Pressure (Hypertension) at home

It is not clear why people with high blood pressure are at a higher risk of developing complications if they contract COVID-19, so it is important to follow all the recommended advice on staying safe and take any heart medication your doctor has prescribed.

You have high blood pressure when your blood pressure readings are more than 140 over 90 consistently over several readings. When on treatment for high blood pressure the target for most people is to have a blood pressure below 130/80mmHg particularly if you have had a cardiac event or stroke; have other risk factors; or have diabetes.

High blood pressure is very common in Ireland and by taking control of your blood pressure you can make a positive step towards reducing your overall risk of having a heart attack or stroke. You can do this following the medical advice you are given by your doctor, having regular check-ups, taking your medication as prescribed and making positive lifestyle changes.

Many people also like to monitor their blood pressure themselves using a home blood pressure monitor. The British & Irish Hypertension Society publishes the only independent, validated blood pressure monitors for home use, not governed by commercial interest. For a full list of validated blood pressure monitors, click here, or here is Croí’s short-list of recommended blood pressure monitors:

  • A&D UA-705: Upper Arm
  • A&D UA-704: Upper Arm
  • Omron M2 Compact (HEM-7102-E): Upper Arm
  • Omron M2 Basic (HEM-7116-E) (Derivative of M3-I (HEM-7051-E)): Upper Arm
  • Omron M7 (HEM-780-E): Upper Arm

The following video outlines how to measure your blood pressure using a validated monitor to ensure it is recorded accurately.

For more information on High Blood Pressure, click here.