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Local Cambridge residents join free blood pressure event as part of Vision Express and Stroke Association healthcare initiative

Press Release   •   Aug 13, 2015 15:26 BST

In partnership with the Stroke Association, Vision Express Cambridge hosted a day long in-store ‘Know Your Blood Pressure’ event on Wednesday 12th August, offering customers and passers-by free blood pressure checks.

Nearly 13,000 people, 1.45% of the regional population, from the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS catchment are survivors of stroke. Up to 60% of stroke survivors will experience visual problems, yet one in three are unaware that sight loss could be a problem or that treatment and support is available. Via an eye test, Vision Express optometrists can identify indicators of increased blood pressure, which is the single biggest risk factor for stroke.

Kathie Butcher from the Stroke Association carried out blood pressure checks at Vision Express’ Grand Arcade store. There she provided advice on the warning signs of stroke, highlighting how simple lifestyle changes can bring blood pressure down to a normal level. Nearly 30 local people including Michael Theobald, Esther Rojas and Glenda Spry visited the store on Wednesday.

The ‘Know Your Blood Pressure’ events are just one initiative as part of the collaboration between the Stroke Association and Vision Express. The partnership will also see Vision Express’ expert optometrists trained on dealing with vision issues associated with stroke, helping survivors and their families to access vital stroke information.

Did you know?

  • Stroke is the fourth leading cause of death in the UK
  • By the age of 75, one in five women and one in six men will have a stroke
  • Stroke kills twice as many women as breast cancer and more men than prostate and testicular cancer combined a year
  • High blood pressure is a contributing factor to 54% of strokes
  • It is estimated there could be up to 6.8 million people in the UK with undiagnosed high blood pressure
  • 61% of all stroke deaths are female.

    James Hails, Head of Corporate Partnerships at the Stroke Association said: “We wanted to work with Vision Express, given the company’s absolute commitment to eye health. The enthusiasm and commitment of the team is second to none. Vision Express truly believes in making a difference to the lives of stroke survivors across the country.”

    Omar Hassan, Head of Professional Services at Vision Express added: “Early signs of stroke can manifest as vision disturbances, and many people don’t realise the breadth of health conditions we can identify with a thorough eye test. It is vital to have a routine exam at least every two years and to see an optometrist straight away if you experience any issues with your sight.”

    Vision Express offers an eye test to best practice guidelines of the College of Optometrists (COO), with each Vision Express optometrist being a qualified eye health professional. To find your nearest Vision Express store and make an Eye Test appointment visit:

About Vision Express

Vision Express is the third largest optical retailer in the UK and part of GrandVision,the global leader in optical retail operating across 43 countries, spanning over 5,800 stores and online.

With more than 390 stores nationwide, Vision Express first opened its doors in Newcastle in 1988. Built on a passion for the profession, it has gone from strength to strength, driven by a commitment to unparalleled customer service and providing the best individual optical care, the right product and great value. Customers can select from a vast range of genuine designer brands and the latest technology lenses, through to complete glasses from £39.

Vision Express is considered one of the leading and most trusted opticians in the UK and Ireland, with its European offering supported through sister eye care brands Grand Optical, Solaris and Generale D'Optique.

With around 4,000 employees, Vision Express makes a significant difference to the communities it operates within, and the organisations it chooses to support. As part of its commitment to Vision. Taken Seriously, and as a responsible and caring retailer, Vision Express is proud to partner with a range of healthcare charities, which have touched the lives of customers and teams. These companies provide vital support to people affected by vision-related conditions. They are part of the Vision Express Charity Project and include:

Alzheimer’s Research UK

Childhood Eye Cancer Trust (CHECT)

International Glaucoma Association

Macular Society

Stroke Association

Temple Street University Hospital.

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