Discount Drug Stores are providing free heart health screenings at more than 142 of its stores across the country during September and October

The screenings have been timed to coincide with National Stroke Week (September 3-9).

It is estimated every 30 minutes an Aussie dies from heart disease, contributing to almost one in four of all deaths recorded in 2016. Almost three quarters (73%) of Australians aged 30 to 65 years old have been told they have at least one risk factor linked to heart disease.

Discount Drug Stores’ screenings assess the patient’s risk of cardiovascular and heart disease, as well as providing tips on how to lower their risk. They can also provide referrals onto the patient’s doctor if risks are present.

Melissa Hui, Discount Drug Stores’ Professional Services Pharmacist, said the free health screenings will provide insight on what can be done to minimise symptoms and help detect the signs earlier among those at risk.

“Heart disease and cardiovascular disease will impact the lives, either directly or indirectly, of almost every Australian. That’s why it’s so important to be aware of the risks and how small changes to your lifestyle may help to combat the disease,” said Mrs Hui.

“Smoking, an unhealthy diet, minimal physical activity, stressful work-life balance, depression, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes are just a few factors which can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.

“Acknowledging and addressing these factors can play a significant role in preventing heart disease and other cardiovascular events such as heart attacks and stroke.

“With stroke being a major contributor to the near 44,000 deaths attributed to cardiovascular disease each year, it is not dramatic to suggest that getting a heart health check could be a lifesaving decision.”