Severe Mental Illness (SMI) Physical Health Checks




This is a new collaborative project working alongside Dorset Healthcare, with an aim to improve the physical health of those living with a severe mental illness in Dorset by working closely with the existing teams in Primary and Secondary care to enhance the existing provision by providing comprehensive physical health assessments, signpost individuals to services to improve their physical health and set goals with individuals to help improve their physical health, putting the individual's needs first, keep people safe, contribute to their care and respond compassionately.

We all have to look after our health, but people with severe mental illness need to be a little extra careful. Medication and lifestyle could put you at risk of certain health problems, and the earlier any issues are identified, the easier they are to fix.


Why should you get a physical health check?

Annual Physical Health Checks for people with severe mental illness (SMI) are designed to pick up on signs that someone may be at risk of diabetes, stroke, or heart problems. This means action can be taken before these issues become more serious.


What is involved in a physical health check?

A health check involves six key elements:

  • Blood pressure check
  • Blood glucose assessment, where a blood sample will be taken to understand what level of glucose (sugar) there is in your blood
  • Blood lipid assessment, where a blood sample is taken to understand what level of cholesterol there is in your blood
  • Smoking assessment
  • Alcohol assessment
  • Height and weight check
  • You may also be asked about your lifestyle, including how well you eat, how much exercise you do and your reproductive health.