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Community Health Screening at Oshwal Centre, London, UK

BAPS Charities was invited by the Oshwal Association of the UK to conduct health screenings at the Oshwal Centre in Hertfordshire on Sunday 22 November 2015. The Oshwal Association of the UK was established in 1967 and is the largest Jain organisation in the country.

The health awareness day was designed to provide basic health screening and advice for members of the local community, offering valuable techniques to lead a healthy lifestyle and addressing a number of health issues such as diabetes, ischaemic heart disease, cholesterol, dementia and cancer.

Volunteers from BAPS Charities have been trained by the Royal Free Hospital and accompanied some of their members to offer expertise on cardio-vascular risk assessment for the community. They also helped to deliver a variety of workshops which comprised informative talks and educational materials.

The two screening sessions included assessments on body-mass index (BMI) as well as blood tests which were collected for further analysis at the hospital laboratory. Each examination was supported with a thorough consultation from a doctor. In addition, high-risk individuals were offered a Carotid Doppler scan to assess narrowing of arteries supplying the brain.

55% of participants were confirmed as either overweight or obese. The same proportion were also diagnosed with high blood pressure and cholesterol.

The findings help to support prevention of serious health issues as well as promote appropriate remedial treatments. The percentage of people at high risk in this community proved to be significantly greater than that of the South Asian Community, which further highlighted the importance of the event.

The feedback from many who were involved in the programme was very encouraging. Dr Divya Nirmal, lead volunteer of BAPS Charities said, “It was very rewarding to educate people about important health issues and to encourage them to take positive action towards leading healthier lifestyles. We would like to thank the Oshwal Community for inviting us to this event. We look forward to helping many more people at similar events in the future.”