Canterbury Medical Practice is participating in the BP@Home scheme, which enables patients with hypertension (or those who need a BP Check) to measure and share their blood pressure readings with their GP from their home.
There is substantial evidence to support this:
- Gives a better reflection of blood pressure as more relaxed environment at home
- More flexibility for patients
- Improve monitoring and ongoing management of blood pressure
- Helping to release clinical time to help with the recovery of routine monitoring following the pandemic.
If you are suitable and wish to join the scheme, we will ask you to measure your blood pressure twice a day over a 4 day period and then send the results back to the surgery (via a text message where possible), where they will be reviewed.
To participate in the scheme patients can use their own blood pressure machine providing it reaches the following criteria:
- Is less than 5 years old
- Have an appropriate sized cuff
- It is validated for home use, please visit the following link by clicking here for a list of recommended machines.
If you don't have access to your own blood pressure machine you can purchase one.
To all of our patients who wish to participate in the scheme we will be sending you a text message with a link to a questionnaire, or we will post a questionnaire if you don't access to the internet on your smartphone. Once you have received your questionnaire you will be taken through the process where the programme will guide you on how to measure your blood pressure.
Once you have recorded your blood pressure readings it will ask you if you are happy with the answers you have supplied and you will need to submit these to the surgery, where they will be reviewed by the clinical team.
The programme can also provide you with daily reminders at 9am and 6pm to check your blood pressure, which is completely optional.
Other ways of taking your blood pressure
If you haven't got access to a blood pressure machine or you are unable to purchase one you can always consider borrowing a machine from a neighbour, friend or relative (providing it meets the above criteria) . Some Pharmacys also offer a BP monitoring service where available.
Canterbury Medical Practice have recently been allocated a limited number of BP machines that we can loan to patients. Unfortunately due to the limited number they will be loaned based on clinical need, this maybe because a Doctor wants you to monitor your blood pressure over a longer period of time or you have other health conditions which increases your risk.
These machines will be able to be collected from our Bridge Health Centre site and will need to be returned after a 4 day period. We will also ask all of our patients who have been loaned a machine to complete a blood pressure loan agreement form. All of these machines will be fully decontaminated before being loaned out to the next patient.
How to take your blood pressure
Please view the following video to watch on how to measure your blood pressure at home.
- Sit down comfortably for 5 minutes.
- Wear loose-fitting clothing.
- Make sure your arm is around the same level as your heart. You may need to support your arm with a cushion.
- Make sure your arm is relaxed, not tense.
When taking your blood pressure:
- Put the cuff on following the instructions which came with your blood pressure monitor.
- Keep still and silent. Moving and talking can affect your reading
How to reduce your blood pressure: 6 top tips
1. Regular physical activity
Try to do some moderate-intensity activity every day and build up to at least 150 minutes per week, in bouts of 10 minutes or more.
2. Keep to a healthy weight
For some people, losing weight is all they need to do to get their blood pressure down to a normal level.
3. Eat a healthy balanced diet.
Use the Eatwell plate to guide the proportions you include from each food group. In particular, include a variety of fruit and vegetables.
4. Cut down on salt
Don’t cook with salt or add any to your food at the table, and cut down on processed foods, which contain a lot of salt.
5. Don't drink too much
If you drink alcohol, stick within the recommended limits. No more than 3–4 units a day for men and no more than 2–3 for women.
6. Take your medicines as prescribed
Most people will need to take more than one type of medicine to control their blood pressure. Don’t stop taking your medication without consulting with your GP first.
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