The National Health Service was born on 5 July 1948, 70 years ago today, and the NHS Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) Screening Programme has a double cause for celebration.
Not only are we joining colleagues across the rest of the health system in celebrating the NHS’s 70th birthday, we are also celebrating the milestone of having invited our 2 millionth man for AAA screening in England.
This is a particularly proud moment for me as clinical lead of the national NHS AAA Screening Programme and I have recorded this podcast to mark the achievement. Click the orange button in the top left corner of the image below to play.
We started implementing screening in England in 2009 along with our colleagues in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Since 2013, every man in the UK has been offered AAA screening during the year they turn 65.
We have screened nearly 1.5 million men in England and detected more than 13,000 aneurysms.
Early results suggest that AAA screening in the UK will contribute to a 50% reduction in AAA-related deaths during their first decade of operation. That is certainly a cause for celebration 70 years to the day after then health secretary Aneurin Bevan launched the NHS.