I am
Show me:
Show me:
Time to book a Heart Health Check?
heartfoundation.org.au|Helpline 13 11 12

Time to book a Heart Health Check?

If you're 45 and over, or 30 and over if you're of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent, you should book your Heart Health Check today

Key takeaways

  • 1.4 million Australians have a high chance of having a heart attack or stroke in the next five years. Many are unaware of this risk 
  • Regular heart health checks with your GP help you better understand your risk of a heart attack or stroke in the next five years  
  • Your GP and nurse can support you to make positive changes to lower this risk
3 min read
Do you know what your risk of having a heart attack or stroke is? Having a regular Heart Health Check with your GP will help you better understand your risk of a heart attack or stroke.  

Most importantly, your GP and nurse can support you to lower this risk.  A Heart Health Check is a 20-minute check-up with your GP to assess your risk of having a heart attack or stroke. 

Why should you get a Heart Health Check? 

Heart Health Checks can detect issues with your heart health. Coronary heart disease is usually the underlying cause of a heart attack, which is Australia’s number one cause of death.  Coronary heart disease is caused when the arteries leading to the heart become hardened or narrow. 

One Australian has a heart attack or stroke every four minutes. Many people may not be aware of their risk factors for heart disease. Also, some risk factors like high blood pressure or high cholesterol can be silent.  

Who needs a Heart Health Check? 

One fifth of Australians aged 45–74 years have a high chance of having a heart attack or stroke in the next five years. 

Anyone 45 years and over or 30 years and over for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should have a regular Heart Health Check with their doctor.  

What should you expect in your Heart Health Check?  

Different tests to check your risk factors 

Your GP or nurse will check your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels.  

A discussion about your history and lifestyle 

Your lifestyle is an important part of assessing your risk of heart disease, as these factors can all play a part. You may be asked about: 

  • Your diet 
  • Physical activity levels 
  • If you smoke or drink alcohol 
  • Whether you are maintaining a healthy weight 
  • Your medical and family history. 

Risk assessment 

Next, your GP uses the information gathered to assess your risk of having a heart attack or stroke in the next five years.  

Make a plan 

If needed, your GP or nurse will work with you to set a plan for improving your risk factors for heart disease and keep on top of your heart health.  

Take medication 

People at high risk of having a heart attack or stroke in the next five years may need to take medication and make lifestyle changes to lower their risk.  

Referral for more support 

Your GP may refer you to another health professional for further support. For example, this could include seeing a dietitian to help you make the right changes to your diet or other lifestyle support programs and walking groups. 

What are the benefits of a Heart Health Check? 

Understanding your risk of having a heart attack or stroke is the first step in lowering the risk. Your GP or nurse will give you advice on the immediate steps you can take to lower your risk of heart disease.  

How much does a Heart Health Check cost? 

Since April 2019, Heart Health Checks have been covered by Medicare and are free at practices that bulk bill this service.  

What other support will you have to make healthy changes? 

The Heart Foundation has plenty of free resources and activities that can help you make positive changes to your lifestyle:  

If you are 45 years and over or 30 years and over for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, see your GP for a Heart Health Check today.  

You might also be interested in

Cyril credits cardiac rehab for getting his life back

Cyril credits cardiac rehab for getting his life back

Cyril credits cardiac rehab for getting his life back

Cyril suffered a heart attack in 2015. Cardiac rehab helped get his life back on track. ...

What's your BMI?

What's your BMI?

What's your BMI?

Are you within a healthy weight range for your height?...

Cholesterol and triglycerides action plan

Cholesterol and triglycerides action plan

Key steps that can help you manage your cholesterol and triglyceride levels....

Aboriginal heart health

Aboriginal heart health

Aboriginal heart health

Visit the St Vincents Hospital NSW and Heart Foundation Aboriginal heart health website for more information...

Kylie defied the heart attack stereotypes

Kylie defied the heart attack stereotypes

Kylie defied the heart attack stereotypes

Cardiac rehabilitation was a turning point for Kylie and essential to her heart failure recovery....

Heart Age Calculator

Heart Age Calculator

Heart Age Calculator

Try our Heart Age Calculator to understand what contributes to your risk of heart disease....

Are you at risk of heart disease?

Are you at risk of heart disease?

Are you at risk of heart disease?

There is no single cause for any one heart condition, but there are risk factors that increase your chance of developing one. ...

Norm discovered he was at risk of a major heart attack just in the nick of time

Norm discovered he was at risk of a major heart attack just in the nick of time

Norm discovered he was at risk of a major heart attack just in the nick of time

Norm didn’t worry too much about his cholesterol problem – until an angiogram revealed he had an 80 per cent blockage in a major heart artery. ...

Quit smoking action plan

Quit smoking action plan

Blood pressure and your heart

Blood pressure and your heart

Blood pressure and your heart

Understand blood pressure and how it can impact your heart health....

Why are you playing this game? It’s putting your heart at risk.

Why are you playing this game? It’s putting your heart at risk.

Why are you playing this game? It’s putting your heart at risk.

The game is “hide and seek”. You play it without even realising. The shock is that when you play this game, you could be placing your heart health at risk....

Sodium and salt converter

Sodium and salt converter

Convert the sodium listed on food products into grams of salt or vice versa. ...

Blood cholesterol

Blood cholesterol

Blood cholesterol

Keeping your blood cholesterol at a healthy level can help you reduce your risk of heart disease and other serious conditions. ...

Diabetes and heart disease

Diabetes and heart disease

Diabetes and heart disease

Diabetes is an ongoing health condition where your body’s usual ways of controlling your blood sugar, or blood glucose levels, don’t work properly. ...

Know your risk: Family history and heart disease 

Know your risk: Family history and heart disease 

Know your risk: Family history and heart disease 

A family history of heart disease could mean you are at greater risk....

What is a healthy body weight?

What is a healthy body weight?

What is a healthy body weight?

Find out what a healthy body weight is and the steps you can take to achieve it. ...

Heart health information in your language

Heart health information in your language

A selection of heart health information brochures in a range languages...

Medical tests for heart disease

Medical tests for heart disease

Medical tests for heart disease

Learn about the common tests your doctor may want you to have to diagnose your heart condition....

Mental health and heart disease

Mental health and heart disease

Mental health and heart disease

Having a mental health condition can have a negative impact on your heart health and increase your risk of heart disease....

Risk factors for women

Risk factors for women

Risk factors for women

In Australia, 90% of women have one risk factor for heart disease, and 50% have two or more. ...

Is salt bad for your heart?

Is salt bad for your heart?

Is salt bad for your heart?

Most Australians are eating more than the recommended amounts and this can cause health problems....

Smoking and your heart

Smoking and your heart

Smoking and your heart

Understand how smoking can impact your heart health. ...

What waist measurements mean for your heart

What waist measurements mean for your heart

What waist measurements mean for your heart

How your waist measurement contributes to your heart health...

Heart Age Calculator

Heart Age Calculator

Heart Age Calculator

Try our Heart Age Calculator to understand what contributes to your risk of heart disease....

Support us and help save Australian hearts

Support us and help save Australian hearts

Support us and help save Australian hearts

Join the fight against Australia’s biggest killer by supporting the Heart Foundation.  ...

Are you at risk of heart disease?

Are you at risk of heart disease?

Are you at risk of heart disease?

There is no single cause for any one heart condition, but there are risk factors that increase your chance of developing one. ...

Fundraise to save Australian hearts

Fundraise to save Australian hearts

Fundraise to save Australian hearts

Join the Heart Foundation community. Together, we can make a real difference for Australian hearts. ...

Heart Foundation Recovery Support and Resources

Heart Foundation Recovery Support and Resources

Heart Foundation Recovery Support and Resources

Heart Foundation programs and resources to support your recovery....

Clinical Guidelines

Clinical Guidelines

Clinical Guidelines

Full list of clinical guidlines and references for CVD, heart failure, ACS, hypertension, atrial fibrillation, SCAD and RHD...

Support and resources for health care professionals

Support and resources for health care professionals

Support and resources for health care professionals

Our range of clinical and patient support resources are available for you to use in your daily practice....

What is a heart attack?

What is a heart attack?

What is a heart attack?

The most common cause of a heart attack is coronary heart disease....

Key Statistics: Heart Failure

Key Statistics: Heart Failure

Cardiac arrest at 33: the challenges of restarting your life

Cardiac arrest at 33: the challenges of restarting your life

Cardiac arrest at 33: the challenges of restarting your life

Emma shares her story and opens up about her emotional struggles....

Become a corporate partner

Become a corporate partner

Become a corporate partner

Partner with us to help us fight for Australian hearts....

What is heart disease?

What is heart disease?

What is heart disease?

Heart disease is the broad term for conditions that affect the structure and function of the heart muscle. ...

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Heart attack recovery – your first month

Explore the Heart Foundation’s guide on what to expect in the first month after your heart attack. ...

Pregnancy and heart disease

Pregnancy and heart disease

Information and resources for health professionals....

Cook with Heart

Cook with Heart

Cook with Heart

Join the Cook with Heart Challenge as seen on Channel 7...

Chicken recipes

Chicken recipes

Chicken recipes

Find heart healthy chicken recipes....

Our history

Our history

Our history

For more than 60 years the Heart Foundation has been helping improve heart health across the nation....

Smart Heart Guidelines App

Smart Heart Guidelines App

Smart Heart Guidelines App

Access to Australian heart disease guidelines is now free at your fingertips...

How to make healthier meals at home

How to make healthier meals at home

How to make healthier meals at home

Cooking at home is often healthier than eating out....

Returning to work after a heart attack

Returning to work after a heart attack

Returning to work after a heart attack

Discover how to plan for your return to work....

Heart Safe Community

Heart Safe Community

Heart Safe Community

Heart Safe Community is a program that aims to increase a person’s chance of survival if they suffer a cardiac arrest outside of hospital. ...

Key healthy eating messages for heart attack recovery 

Key healthy eating messages for heart attack recovery 

Key healthy eating messages for heart attack recovery 

Eating healthy foods can help you recover and reduce your risk of more heart problems. ...

The NSW Cardiac Rehabilitation Working Group

The NSW Cardiac Rehabilitation Working Group

Baking recipes

Baking recipes

Baking recipes

Find heart healthy baking recipes ...

Reading food labels

Reading food labels

Reading food labels

Nutrition information panels and ingredients lists are a good way of comparing similar foods so you can choose the healthiest option....

Kids recipes

Kids recipes

Kids recipes

Find heart healthy kids recipes...

David’s shock heart failure diagnosis was just the start of a tough journey

David’s shock heart failure diagnosis was just the start of a tough journey

David’s shock heart failure diagnosis was just the start of a tough journey

David's heart failure diagnosis led to significant changes in his life....

Cardiac arrest at 26: adjusting to a new ‘normal’

Cardiac arrest at 26: adjusting to a new ‘normal’

Cardiac arrest at 26: adjusting to a new ‘normal’

Know your risk: Family history and heart disease 

Know your risk: Family history and heart disease 

Know your risk: Family history and heart disease 

A family history of heart disease could mean you are at greater risk....

Feelings and emotions after a heart attack

Feelings and emotions after a heart attack

Feelings and emotions after a heart attack

This is a guide to how you might be feeling after a heart attack. ...