The Irish Cancer Society is providing free health checks in Tullamore next week as part of the ‘Your Health Matters’ Roadshow.
Members of the public can speak to one of their cancer nurses who can answer any questions people may have in the Bridge Shopping Centre, Tullamore on Wednesday, May 24 and Thursday, May 25 from 9am to 6pm.
The 15-minute health check includes blood pressure and body mass index (BMI) checks and a carbon monoxide (CO) reading. Nurses can also arrange a referral to a GP if further help is needed.
The ‘Your Health Matters’ Roadshow initiative aims to reduce people’s risk of cancer and improve early detection rates by: promoting healthy lifestyle changes, increasing awareness of cancer symptoms, encouraging people to go to their doctor if they have any symptoms and addressing any barriers and fears that make it hard for them to access health services.
Early detection and diagnosis of cancer is essential to improve health outcomes. When cancer is diagnosed early, it can improve the quality of life of those living with cancer, increase survival and reduce the severity of treatment. Many patients find it difficult to attend GP visits even when they are experiencing potential cancer symptoms.
This nurse-led community outreach initiative is delivered in shopping centres in areas of most disadvantage. Trained nurses provide confidential consultations with members of the local community. They provide basic health checks and lifestyle advice to improve people’s awareness of cancer signs, the importance of screening, positive lifestyle changes and to encourage medical care-seeking behaviour.
A recent study conducted in partnership with The University College Dublin found encouraging evidence of the Roadshow’s success. Findings showed more than four out of five of those surveyed approved of the health checks and found the information provided useful. Those who engaged with the Roadshows had also increased their knowledge of the signs and symptoms of cancer and improved their understanding of the risk factors related to cancer.
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