Act F.A.S.T. Stroke Campaign

Posted by: jreeveseastwood - Posted on:

act FAST banner 2

NHS England, in association with the Stroke Association relaunched the Act F.A.S.T. stroke campaign this week. The campaign highlights that a stroke is a medical emergency and urges the public to call 999 immediately if they notice any single one of the signs of a stroke in themselves or others.

 The primary audience for the campaign is people aged 50+, as this age group are more likely to experience a stroke, but the campaign also targets a wider all adult audience of ‘stroke savers’ who may witness somebody showing one of the stroke signs, be it a loved one or a friend.

There are around 100,000 strokes in England, Scotland and Wales every year, with around 33,000 stroke related deaths each year, as well as being a leading cause of disability.

A stroke is known as a ‘brain attack’. It is a medical emergency that requires immediate attention as every minute is vital. That is why calling 999 is so crucial.

The Act F.A.S.T. (Face, Arms, Speech, Time) acronym provides a memorable way of identifying the most common signs of a stroke and emphasises the importance of acting quickly by calling 999.

The campaign has run for more than ten years and the F.A.S.T. (Face, Arms,

Speech, Time) acronym is effective in driving calls to 999 for stroke, saving lives and reducing disability.

It also provides a simple test to help people identify the most common signs of a stroke:

Think and Act F.A.S.T. if you see any single one of these signs of a stroke:

• Face – has their face fallen on one side? Can they smile?

• Arms – can they raise both arms and keep them there?

• Speech – is their speech slurred?

• Time – even if you’re not sure, call 999.

When Stroke Strikes Act F.A.S.T. Call 999

Early recognition of symptoms can give stroke patients those extra precious minutes, enabling faster access to specialist treatment.

Whether it is a friend, loved one or even a stranger, dialing 999 quickly and acting F.A.S.T saves lives and gives stroke patients their best chance to access emergency procedures and to have recovery which could reduce the long-term effects such as a disability.

The Act FAST campaign has run for over 10 years and is one of the most successful health awareness campaigns. Increased awareness of the FAST acronym has been shown to lead to patients seeking prompt help for stroke symptoms, enabling more to be eligible for lifesaving treatments and reducing disability following their stroke

Are there any other signs to be aware of?

There are some other signs that people should be aware of as these may occasionally be due to stroke. These include:

• Sudden loss of vision or blurred vision in one or both eyes

• Sudden weakness or numbness on one side of the body

• Sudden memory loss or confusion

• Sudden dizziness, unsteadiness or a sudden fall, especially with any of the other signs

For more information please take a look at the following website and the leaflet below.