New campaign launched to help people think twice about stroke symptoms

Don’t be caught in two minds, you could be having a stroke – that’s the key message powering a new local campaign designed to help people act fast on possible stroke symptoms. 

Research suggests that people in Barnsley are not acting fast to get vital life-saving treatment in the critical first four and a half hours after having a stroke.  

Acting fast is important as it helps you get the best possible support to prevent long-term health conditions stemming from strokes and could save your life. 

In response to local data, we’ve been working closely with our health and care partners to develop something different for Barnsley, rooted in local stories and experiences. 

The campaign combines the symptoms people may already be aware of thanks to the national FAST campaign with the stories we’re seeing in Barnsley. 

Working with stroke cafés, the campaign features local stroke survivors telling their stories and sharing the symptoms they experienced to help everyone think twice about strokes. These include sudden gripping headaches, blurred vision and balance problems. 

The campaign also features their loved ones and the professionals supporting stroke survivors in Barnsley, showing how we can all help look out for the signs in the people around us. 

Alongside the new campaign, we’ve launched a short video, bringing together the stroke survivors we talked to with a simple, urgent call to action – act fast, call 999. 

Hear from the stroke survivors featured in our new local stroke campaign by visiting Barnsley Council’s YouTube channel. 

Councillor Wendy Cain, Cabinet Spokesperson for Public Health and Communities, said: “In Barnsley, we want to help everyone have the best possible chance of enjoying life in good health, crucially getting the right support at the right time. I’m therefore delighted to see our new stroke campaign launched for Barnsley, encouraging people to think twice about the sudden symptoms they may be experiencing and act fast to get the best possible treatment.  

“I want to thank all the stroke survivors and their loved ones featured in the campaign – by telling your stories and sharing your experiences, you’re helping to save lives across Barnsley.” 

Wendy Lowder, Place Director for Health and Care in Barnsley, said: “In Barnsley, we’re proud to do things differently and we’re passionate about working together across health and care to help our communities live happier, healthier lives. To us, there’s nothing more powerful than hearing from Barnsley people and sharing their experiences. 

“We’re really excited about our new stroke campaign, which is a testament to the great partnerships we have in Barnsley. Together with our stoke cafés and survivors, this has been a real team effort which we hope will encourage people to come forward for support sooner.” 

If you or anyone you know is suddenly experiencing any of the following symptoms, please call 999 as soon as possible: 

  • Severe headaches. 
  • Speech problems. 
  • Weakness down one or both sides of your body. 
  • Facial paralysis or droop. 
  • Coordination problems. 
  • Vision problems. 

This campaign has been developed in partnership with key health and care partners including the Stroke Association, Barnsley Hospital, the South Yorkshire Integrated Care Board and the Yorkshire Ambulance Service.

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