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Blood pressure tests offered free at Walgreens, Take Care
January 13th, 2011
DEERFIELD, Ill. – Walgreens pharmacies and Take Care Clinic locations nationwide are providing free blood pressure testing through the end of this weekend.
Walgreen Co. said the free blood pressure checks, an initiative announced Thursday on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," are available to adults at its drug stores and retail health clinics through Sunday, Jan. 16, during regular pharmacy and clinic hours.
Each test includes a free consultation from a Walgreens pharmacist or a Take Care Clinic nurse practitioner. The free blood pressure tests aren't being done for diagnostic or treatment purposes, and recipients are urged to report results to their primary care provider, according to Walgreens.
The drug chain reported that more than 76 million people in the United States age 20 and older have high blood pressure, based on American Heart Association data. Of those people, about 22% are unaware of their condition, 69% are receiving treatment and just 45% have their blood pressure controlled, according to the association.
"It's extremely important for people to know their numbers when it comes to blood pressure, because often times there may not be symptoms that alert you to a problem," Richard Ashworth, vice president of pharmacy operations at Walgreens, said in a statement. "Hypertension is one of the most prevalent chronic conditions in our country today, and by offering free blood pressure testing at our more than 7,600 locations, we hope these services and interaction with our health care service providers encourage more people to make blood pressure monitoring a practice in managing their overall health."
Last year the company also held some free health testing initiatives. In mid-April, Take Care Health Systems began offering free blood pressure screenings at all Take Care clinics nationwide through the end of May. And in another effort spotlighted on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," Walgreens and Take Care in early February began providing free blood glucose screenings at thousands of locations nationwide, along with diabetes education.