NHS Health Check programme

We explore how uptake of the NHS Health Check programme has changed over time.

Indicator

Last updated: 27/01/2021

Effective clinical care
Primary and community care Public health

Background

The NHS Health Check programme aims to identify early signs of stroke, kidney disease, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and dementia. Adults between the ages of 40 and 74, who do not already have a diagnosis of one of these conditions, are invited for an NHS Health Check once every five years. During the check, risk factors such as physical inactivity, smoking and high blood pressure are assessed, and personalised advice on reducing risk is given.


How has uptake of the NHS Health Check changed over time? 27/01/2021

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High uptake of NHS Health Checks is important for the early detection of risk factors and interventions to prevent disease. The percentage of the eligible population who receive an NHS Health Check is measured as an indicator in the Public Health Outcomes Framework.

Between 2013/14 and 2019/20, the number of NHS Health Checks offered each quarter fluctuated at around 700,000. On average, 333,000 eligible people received an NHS Health Check each quarter. In Q1 2020/21 (April to June 2020), during the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, the number offered plummeted to 30,190 and only 8,961 people received an NHS Health Check. This corresponds to a fall in the percentage of NHS Health Checks taken up – from 44% in Q1 2019/20 to 30% in Q1 2020/21. In Q2 2020/21 (July to September 2020), the numbers of health checks offered and received increased slightly, but remained considerably below the levels seen in previous years.


About this data

The NHS Health Check programme aims to cover the eligible population over a five-year period. Therefore, the number of eligible people offered an NHS Health Check each quarter does not represent the total eligible population.

The percentage of NHS Health Checks which were taken up in the quarter is calculated as:

  • Numerator: number of people aged 40 to 74 eligible for an NHS Health Check who received an NHS Health Check in the current quarter.
  • Denominator: number of people aged 40 to 74 eligible for an NHS Health Check who were offered an NHS Health Check in the current quarter.

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