Frequently Asked Questions

Some of questions we get asked about the blood testing service offered at Greenacres Health.

What is the equipment?

It is a diagnostic device which is also used in many NHS settings in the UK. It works by adding a drop of blood to a cartridge, inserting the cartridge into the device and the analysis is complete in just a few minutes. The results are printed out so you can take them away with you.
The little box is known as a skyla Hi. Manufactured in Taiwan by a company that supplies high quality and accurate machines into the NHS in the UK.

What happens at an appointment?

It is recommended that you book 2 tests, approximately 3-6 months apart particularly when considering diabetes and cholesterol, so that you can monitor your improvement once you have adopted appropriate life changes or sought additional help to do so.

You will have a short form to complete and sign. COVID protocols will be followed with your temperature being taken upon arrival, hand gel administered and face masks a must. You will be offered a comfy chair and your finger sterilised before the single use lancet is applied to your fingertip. You will feel a sharp prick like sensation and a drop of blood will form, this is collected into a cartridge which is then placed into the reader for analysis. Just a few minutes later you will be given a printout with your results to take away with you and you can leave.

Whilst we are waiting we can record your height, weight, waist measurement, blood pressure and oxygen saturation levels.

Why Blood Tests?

Blood test results and patterns in the signs and symptoms you experience give pointers to disease processes, creating a picture that allow clinicians to make diagnosis and know how best to help you back to health.
Tests also provide evidence of improvement or deterioration at a given point in time.

Do I need to fast before my test?

There is no need to fast. This is not a blood sugar test. This test looks at a chemical bound to protein in your blood which shows an historical impression of how well your body has processed, or been stressed by, the diet you have consumed over the past 3 months (12 weeks).

What should I do with the results?

These results can be just for your own interest or may be shared with your usual healthcare provider (GP). The intention is to give you the power of knowledge rather than supposition about your underlying health, allowing you to do further research and take appropriate action. It is not intended that you will receive bespoke advice from the test deliverer. 

Guidance can be found at the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and World Health Organisation (WHO) websites NICE | The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence / WHO | World Health Organization

What if I want more than one test?

This is possible at the same appointment. With COVID restrictions in place, it is advisable not to be in close proximity for extended periods so 2 or 3 tests are possible in one session currently.

But I can get these done via the NHS?

You can, but it is likely only if you have symptoms already that warrant the test, often when you are showing signs of a disease process already. Remember the NHS treats not prevents, as its primary purpose. Sometimes these tests are run at certain times of your life, in well man/woman clinics or when you move home and must change your GP. The earlier you catch these signs and symptoms the bigger the impact, simple, small, lifestyle changes can have and, in many cases, avoid medication completely.

You can request from your GP a NHS Health Check IF you are aged 40 -74 in England only. Similar schemes are available else where in the UK. Your GP should offer this to you every 5 years. The implication here is that you could go 5 years with underlying issues building and when you get another review something more difficult to treat is evident. Our tests are offered more regularly. We would not suggest testing too regularly as this would be of little benefit to you but dependant upon the test involved eg Diabetes HbA1c, 4 monthly would be appropriate ; Cholesterol - Lipid panel, an annual check might be a good idea. Again these appointment requests may be met with some resistence at this current time due to COVID restriction.

You can also request an appointment for a blood pressure check with the practice nurse at any time and depending on your local surgery you may find this quite a difficult thing to do and juggle work and other commitments.

Why should I pay to have these tests privately?

During these drastic times we find ourselves in, why not take the pressure off of the NHS resources.
Often you are not told the results in detail, if at all and often wait days or weeks where you can sit and worry building things out of proportion with so many ‘what if...’ questions. Results are often not recorded on our digitally accessible GP records quickly or we have problems accessing our records.

There is no lengthy appointment system or long telephone messages and queues to contend with.
There are no crowded waiting rooms. You would be the only person in the clinic at that time.
Not everyone wants to have results on their NHS records be that for many reasons insurance, profession etc
No big needles, just a mild finger prick.

What else is on offer?

It is possible to give you a Blood pressure and pulse reading, measure your height, weight and waist measurement and from the Chiropractor a spinal health overview with advice. Details of packages of care available upon enquiry.

I’m a professional and want a machine. How do I go about getting one?

The Skyla Hi is only available in the UK from Health Reader. Click this link fill out the contact details and tell them you saw it at Greenacres. 

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