Screening

Our practice is committed to preventative health and follow-up care. We may send you a reminder notice from time to time offering you preventative and follow-up health services appropriate to your care. If you do not wish to be part of this system please let us know.

Cliche or not, it remains true – prevention is not just better than cure, it is in most cases a lot easier than cure. Even more importantly, early detection when you are not even aware something is wrong can help save your life.

We understand that at times you probably feel a little overwhelmed by the volume of information you receive, not just in the media but from the clinic as well. It is quite difficult as a patient to go in to the Doctor for a cold and leave with a host of information and undergo procedures that you were just not ready to deal with.

But these preventative health programmes can help save your life. Examples of how we have recently achieved this in our patients by doing regular simple blood tests include:

  • A well male with slightly abnormal liver tests found to have a Pancreatic Cancer and has undergone successful curative surgery.
  • A well female with iron deficiency found to have a cancer in her colon which was successfully managed with surgery.
  • A well female with slightly abnormal thyroid tests found to have a thyroid cancer which has been successfully managed with surgery.

There are many more examples that we could give you, but I’m sure you get the message: early detection is the best way to prevent serious disease progressing undetected.

Listed below are the current screening programmes we offer as part of keeping our patients well. Please feel free to discuss these with the Doctor or Nurse at your next visit.

Government and Primary Health Organisation Driven Initiatives

Cardio Vascular Risk Assessment – A CVD risk assessment assesses your risk of whether you are likely to develop angina or have a heart attack or stroke in the next 5 years, by looking at the risk factors for Cardio vascular disease. This programme starts at age 45 and it is recommended that your risk is assessed regularly.

Diabetes Get Checked – This is a free check for patients with confirmed Diabetes and is carried out by your nurse or doctor every year to help you manage your diabetes and prevent complications. You can arrange your free check by contacting your family doctor.

Smoking Cessation – ATM (Ask Triage Manage) introduces a method of intervention which allows the Doctor or Nurse to provide a “custom fit” service after assessing the level of support required for a successful quit attempt which can range from self help through to intensive support including prescriptions for nicotine replacement.

GASP (Giving Asthma Support to Patients) – Assists patients with the assessment and management of your Asthma or Chronic Lung Disease treatment.

Green Prescription – Green Prescriptions (GRx) enable Doctors, Practice Nurses and other Health Professionals to prescribe physical activity to their patients with complementary limited gym sessions.

Cervical Cancer Screening – Cervical smears are recommended for all women from age 25 to 70 and are repeated between 3 months to 3 years depending on the results of your test. We recall patients at 2 years rather than 3 years, and for patients that have had a hysterectomy we recommend if appropriate a smear test every 5 years which includes an all important internal examination to exclude ovarian masses.

Breast Screening – Mammograms are recommended for all women aged 45 to 70 on a two yearly basis. It is also recommended that prior to your mammogram you undergo a breast examination with your Doctor as mammograms may sometimes miss lumps or areas of abnormal tissue that can only be detected by examination. Patients on Hormone Replacement Therapy or those with a Family History of Breast Cancer are advised to have annual mammograms. We currently recommend all patients attend for an annual breast examination and mammogram.

Childhood Immunisation – Immunisations are offered for the prevention of many diseases including Tetanus, Diphtheria, Whooping Cough (Pertussis), Human Papilloma Virus (Cervical Cancer), Hepatitis B, Pneumococcal Disease, Mumps, Measles, Rubella, Polio and Haemophillus Influenze.

Influenza Immunisation – Annual immunisation is offered to high risk children and adults during the autumn and winter.

Adult Immunisation – ADT (Adult Diphtheria and Tetanus) booster vaccine is recommended at age 25, 45 and 65.

Practice Driven Initiatives

These are screening programmes that do not form part of the National screening programmes but are recommended by our Clinic.

Blood screen – we recommend a full blood screen at ages 5, 15, 30, 35 and 40 and then an annual blood screen from age 45 onwards. Many treatable diseases can be detected by this method.

Diabetes – If you have a family history of Diabetes, we recommend regularly testing starting at an age appropriate to when the family member was diagnosed.

Prostate – There is currently no national screening programme and it remains a controversial topic, we however recommend annual PSA levels from age 40 with 2 yearly prostate examinations and the completion of a Prostate Screening Questionnaire.

Skin – We recommend annual skin cancer checks from age 30 and in high risk patients the checks should be pre-Summer and post-Summer.

Colon Cancer – We recommend blood and faeces testing from age 45 onwards and a colonoscopy for all patients with a family history of colon cancer. The screening for patients with a family history is recommended to start at an age 10 years younger than the first family member was first diagnosed.

Hepatitis B – We recommend blood testing and immunisation for all patients.

Lung Cancer in Smokers – We recommend regular chest x-rays for smokers from age 40 onwards.

Ovarian Cancer – We recommend that you choose to have a Doctor perform an internal examination when you have your Cervical Smears done and if there is a history in the family, then regular Ultrasound scanning as well.

Glaucoma – We recommend regular eye testing including pressure measurements from age 40 onwards.

Bone Density – We recommend regular bone density checks from age 50 onwards (or at the onset of menopause) to detect osteoporosis.

We run an active recall system that sends you reminders of when you are due for your preventative health screening tests and examinations.