MP Jim gets pulse checked at Westminster to test his heartbeat

Jim Fitzpatrick has had his pulse tested in a campaign for public awareness about Britain’s most common heart rhythm disorder.

The Poplar & Limehouse MP took part in the event in Parliament as part of World Heart Rhythm Week to spread knowledge of Atrial Fibrillation.

The campaign highlights a simple pulse check of detecting heart rhythm disorders—taking your pulse at various times in the day to see if there’s any unusual heart rate.

“It’s astonishing to think that such a simple test could help diagnose and treat a condition which can have such serious consequences,” said the MP.

“I hope to encourage the Primary Care Trust to look at diagnosis and treatment of patients to see if a pulse test as part of the NHS ‘health check’ would be appropriate in the East End.”

The condition affected 800,000 people in the UK, according to figures published in 2007 by the Department of Health.

But four years on, this is now thought to be an underestimate—now believed to affect a million people, with 200,000 patients being newly diagnosed each year.