Friday, 2 March 2012

What Is a Health Assessment?

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Too many people go through life only visiting a doctor when they are ill. However, doctors can help you when you're not ill in the form of a general check-up. In some countries, it's perfectly normal to visit your doctor every year for a check-up, in order to ensure that your body is working as it's supposed to. In the UK, the NHS manages a high demand for GPs, so diagnosis and treatment is given priority. That's why many people with the means to do so turn to private hospitals, getting a health assessment for their own peace of mind. But what exactly is a health assessment and what does it involve?

Essentially, a health assessment is a general check-up on the health of your body. It involves tests that can take from an hour to all day, which will tell you about the general state of your health and help you identify any potential problem areas. Often, people who undergo a health assessment come out of it reassured that their body is in tip-top condition. Sometimes, it can help people spot a problem, such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol. In some cases, it can even help catch fatal diseases like cancer in their early stages.

A health assessment may include the following elements: a medical history and lifestyle questionnaire, in order to gain a better understanding of your health; a physical examination that assesses the state of your health through a number of tests; and a consultation with a doctor or medical advisor to discuss the results of your assessment. A comprehensive health assessment will also give you the chance to discuss your own concerns and come up with a plan for improving your health with your doctor. Some health assessments may be spread over two days, if test results are not available immediately, while others may be concluded in one day.

Many people undergo a health assessment as an essential requirement of their health cover. However, some choose to take one if they're worried about a particular aspect of their health. If you fall into the latter camp, don't simply pick the first hospital you see that provides the service. Remember that health assessments aren't a one-size-fits-all procedure; they can vary from basic check-ups to detailed investigations in particular areas of your body. Some hospitals offer specialist health assessments for women and for older people, so consider what your health priorities are - and how much you can spend - before opting for a particular service.

The author of this article is a part of a digital marketing agency that works with brands like Bupa. The views and opinions expressed within this article about health assessments and health cover belong to the writer and any reference or summary of Bupa Health Information Factsheets or product information is that of the writers and does not represent Bupa or the information contained within the Bupa website. The contents of this article are of a general nature only and do not constitute specific advice.  This article does not take into account your circumstances or needs and must not be relied upon in place of appropriate professional advice.

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