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Focus On East Midlands - Edition Four

Health Awareness Day

Solicitors at Irwin Mitchell's Leicester consulting office joined forces with the Rik Basra Leukaemia Campaign to offer a free event for the Sikh community to highlight a number of different health issues and provide access to specialist charities that can advise and offer support.

The Health Awareness Day took place at Leicester's largest Sikh temple, Guru Tegh Bahadur Gurdwara. Organisations including the Anthony Nolan Trust, Hope Against Cancer, Menphys, The British Heart Foundation, Rainbows, Headway, Naya Qadam Trust and The Meningitis Trust, were on hand to offer health-related guidance to visitors.

Ophthalmologists, audiologists, and dental surgeons offered free eye and hearing tests and oral hygiene checkups throughout the day, and a total of 150 checks were carried out. A number of conditions were detected at early stages including myopia (short sightedness) in a young girl aged 12 years old.

The ophthalmologists referred her to have a full eye examination at her local opticians. If this clinic was not running she would not have learnt of myopia until a lot later in life. The ophthalmologist who reported back on this story commented: "Being able to correct her visual difficulty this early on will allow her to see the school whiteboard with greater ease and it has been proven that good vision and education have a direct correlation."

Tim Deeming, a medical negligence lawyer at Irwin Mitchell helped organise the event along with a number of groups across the firm. He said "Irwin Mitchell is committed to giving back to the communities in which we work, to ensure appropriate support and guidance."

"In doing so we are able to celebrate the diversity of Irwin Mitchell, our clients and the communities and charities that we assist given that cultural diversity and social responsibility is fundamental."

"Given the range of legal services that Irwin Mitchell provides, we believe it is vital to create an inclusive and supportive environment in which we can assist local charities and communities and supporting events such as this make this happen."

There are a range of health issues that are common in the South Asian community in Leicester such as high cholesterol, diabetes and raised blood pressure.

Tim added: "The advice is always underpinned with the message that people need to speak with their GP's before they embark on any changes to their lifestyle or if they are worried about any specific health issues."

A Rik Basra Leukaemia Campaign spokesperson said: "The RBL Campaign, working closely with Anthony Nolan, utilises trained volunteers to support prospective donors through the registration process to ensure those on the database are informed, quality donors who will remain active on the register for many years to come, each and every one has the potential to save a life."

"The solution lies in improving knowledge and understanding of these life changing issues within the community. It's only by doing so that we can hope to effect change. We are so pleased to be working with Irwin Mitchell and the Gurdwara as key community advocates promoting positive health awareness messages right in the heart of the community."

For more information on the Rik Basra campaign please visit www.rikbasra.com.

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