Street signs increase blood pressure screenings

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Savannah Fire and Emergency Services and the Community Cardiovascular Council are making it easier for citizens to get blood pressure screenings and potentially prevent life threatening diseases.

After unveiling street signs in May reminding citizens that all SFES fire stations offer free blood pressure screenings, the Community Cardiovascular Council reports that screenings have increased 40 percent from May 2010 and 42 percent from June 2010, according to a press release.

During the last year, Savannah firefighters have performed more than 3,600 screenings across the city. These free screenings are available at all 15 Savannah fire stations when firefighters are present.

The Community Cardiovascular Council provided the signs to SFES and Council Board Chairman Dr. James Metts said he is pleased with and encouraged by the early success realized from having the highly-visible signs in place, according to a statement.

Noting the importance of this community health service, both Dr. Metts and Savannah Fire Chief Charles Middleton encourage citizens to take a few minutes and stop by their neighborhood fire station to have this vital, free health screening performed.

High blood pressure may increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. Called the "silent killer," it's reported that almost one-third of people living with high blood pressure are unaware that they have it.

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