Encouraging Aussies to Have Their Free Blood Pressure Check [Interview][Transcript]

Guest: Bianca Venuti

Presenter: Henry Acosta

Guest Bio: Six months ago her amazing mum, Maria Venuti, had a major haemorrhagic stroke which resulted in significant bleeding in her brain. Even though her mum had experienced brief periods of high blood pressure in the past, it was very unexpected and such a huge shock. They were definitely not prepared for the way it has turned their lives upside down. Her recovery and rehab has been a slow process but she’s making great progress and Bianca is so proud of how far she has come. Bianca has teamed up with Priceline Pharmacy because she wants to help highlight the need for regular blood pressure checks to fight against stroke.

Segment overview: In today’s segment, we are joined by Priceline Pharmacy Mission Health Ambassador Bianca Venuti here to share information about their recently launched campaign in collaboration with the Stroke Foundation, Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check. Bianca shares her mother’s stroke story to encourage others to have their blood pressure checked as this is the number one risk factor for stroke. In the previous year a total of 56,000 checks were recorded and they aim to beat that number this year. Bianca has partnered with Priceline Pharmacy, following her mother’s major haemorrhagic stroke last year, to help spread awareness on the importance of having our blood pressure checked regularly.

Transcript

Henry Acosta: I’m Henry Acosta and welcome to Health Professional Radio. Did you know that share around 4 million Australians living with high blood pressure? Along with having high blood pressure, the risk of getting a stroke increases by 46 times. Joining us today is Bianca Venuti as one of the health ambassadors of Priceline Pharmacy. Priceline Pharmacy has partnered up with the stroke foundation to help spread awareness on the dangerous of what having high blood pressure means. Bianca joins us today to talk about her experience with her mother. The great and well known entertainer, Maria Venuti about caring for people who are bound through a stroke and what it means to have your blood pressure check every now and then. Priceline Pharmacy is also launching the Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check. You can go to any Priceline Pharmacy branch and get your blood pressure check for free and all it takes is just 5 minutes of your time. With all that said, thank you for coming by Bianca, great to have you here.

Bianca Vinuti: Thank you very much. Thank you for having me.

H: To kick things off, I just wanted to ask. Since your mom had a stroke last year, how has that impacted your life? What are the things that have happened?

B: Yes, sure. It’s been pretty significant change in our lives, that’s … to say. My mom had quite a hemorrhagic stroke. It was a very big delay which basically impacts around half of her body and her communication. Things that you think day to day is being normal and comfortable, questions to all of that. It’s like just to get her through it, she’s been in hospital and rehab for the last 6 months and so she’s now home. We’ve on to the next challenge and instead of living week by week taking challenge by challenge, but we getting through it which is great.

H: That sounds like great news. Congratulations in getting your mom home already from rehab.

B: Thank you.

H: Our next question. Were there early warning signs that she was about to have a stroke?

B: From my mom it was a little bit different. Because I know that we’re kind of very aware of the warning signs to look at. But because she’d had a significant shock, it all happened very, very quickly and while we kind of had the ambulance and everything in a half an hour. The damage has already been done. Not change you a little bit different but generally I think it’s really is important to look for the warning signs and it seems like she lose speech, she looks face in drip a little bit. I just try to remember the acronym is it FAITH?. Do you know what the acronym is?

H: I think it’s FAITH, but my memory is not very good with it.

B: Let’s try to fit in my mind after work it out. But for mom it was a little bit different in that. It was quite a sudden shocked which sent her blood pressure to really worst which meant that she had this huge play.

H: I see. What do we have to know or what do you want our audience to know about having high blood pressure and how are you supposed to deal with it?

B: I think the really big thing to understand is that the blood pressure is the big three factor for stroke. We can monitor our blood pressure, we can stay on top of it. I think Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check is such a good opportunity to go into Priceline Pharmacy. Get your blood pressure checked that it takes 10 minutes and get an understanding and aware of that. And obviously, it said anything that needs to be advised from the GP, the pharmacist will let you know. I think we did something like 56,000 blood pressure check last year so we’re looking to beat that this year. Yes, it’s heading to Priceline Pharmacy before the 14th of June and get it all check out.

H: I hope you do beat that. With regards to that, how did you start getting involved with Priceline Pharmacy and how do you get partnered up with them?

B: I’m partnering with the The Stroke Foundation in Priceline Pharmacy to bring a scientific blood pressure check … I supposed when an approached say, I’m quite passionate about everyone having their blood pressure check regularly. I think that it something like strokes cure more women than breast cancer and more men than prostate cancer. We talked about all of these things that I think it is so important when you got real experience than to really understand. From what it can do to share that will all this to help prevent the people having to have the same experience.

H: What can you tell us about the misconceptions around people having high blood pressure and maybe about caring for a people have gone through a stroke?

B: I think probably the expent of what can happen is something I can now … my daddy had a stroke before, mom did and I thought, you know it’s fine it’s was minor stroke. Mom’s stroke nearly killed her. I think even in my mind, if mom was never going to have a stroke, she would’ve been fine, whereas actually, she wasn’t fine. I think the importance of really actively managing your blood pressure but also yes, I supposed that sense of not being too busy, or never happened to me. All of those things that happen in our day to day. When something hits you like this, you realised how important it is. I think it’s really about having a pro-activity to say this could be very, very serious. Not just something that would quickly get over.

H: What do you want our listeners to learn from this interview?

B: The key thing, the key message, I mean get your blood pressure check. I think the Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check Campaign run through to the 14th of June. There was free blood pressure check in every Priceline Pharmacies. Be proactive in managing your own health and go and get your blood pressure check.

H: Awesome. For our last question, how can people who are interested in maybe learning more about Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check and about strokes in general? How can they reach out to the Stroke Foundation and to you?

B: For more information, I know that if you go to the priceline.com.au/mission, I can help. You can find some more information about there. The Stroke Foundation website going to the Priceline Pharmacy and speak to one of the pharmacist, they’re more than happy to help, to explain a little bit more about stroke and blood pressure and obviously, the opportunities for the people do help.

H: Awesome. Well that’s our question for today and thank you for coming by. That was Bianca Venuti one of the Priceline Pharmacy mission health ambassadors. We just finish talking about high blood pressure, strokes and the ABBPC or Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check Campaign. You can go to any Priceline Pharmacy branch to get your blood pressure check from today to the 14th of June. It is free of charge and it will only take around 5-10 minutes of your time. If you want to listen to more interviews and find our transcripts and archive, you can go on www.hpr.fm. We are also available on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, SoundCloud and iTunes. I’m Henry Acosta, helping spread awareness on good health and positivity. You’ve been listening to Health Professional Radio.