GPs believe that cardiovascular disease screening will only be implemented in practices if it is included in the Quality and Outcome Framework (QOF), a survey shows.
Only one in ten GPs implement Joint British Societies and NICE guidelines by routinely assessing all patients over 40 years of age for cardiovascular (CV) risk factors.
The survey shows that patients are only checked for CV risk factors when they ask their healthcare professional for an assessment.
GPs do not often measure multiple risk factors to calculate a patient's overall risk, and important measurements such as waist circumference and blood sugars are often overlooked.
Some 57% of GPs believed including CV screening in the QOF was the best way to ensure that comprehensive CV assessment was adopted in practice.
Cathy Ratcliffe, from HEART UK, said: "We have seen from the government's own Foresight Report on obesity that levels of CVD and diabetes are set to explode over the next 30 years.
"Much of this could be prevented by a more intergrated approach to heart health assessment and management.
"The QOF's role in supporting this will be key in ensuring that it is implemented effectively across the country."
HEART UKRelated story: Experts warn QOF may not be best for patients
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