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During High Blood Pressure Education Month in May, Wegmans Food Markets is encouraging the use of its state-of-the-art Lifeclinic 500 health stations, which enable customers to take their own vital statistics and track them over time. The stations can measure blood pressure, pulse and weight, and calculate body mass index (BMI).
According to Rochester, N.Y.-based Wegmans, the fast, free and private service lets users store password-protected personal statistics online and print out their records to share with medical professionals.
"It makes recordkeeping so much easier," affirmed Katie Niles, Wegmans' clinical and wellness services coordinator. "You can also tell at a glance the meaning of your numbers -- if you're in a normal, healthy range, or if there's something to discuss with your health provider."
Lifeclinic 500 a Lifesaver
On a monthly basis, 100,000-plus blood pressure readings per month are taken at the grocer's 84 stores; more than 800 people create new private accounts to store their personal data; and about 900 save the data from their visits to Lifeclinic 500 units, which are provided by Chicago-based Merge Healthcare.
"Knowing your numbers is the first step in taking charge of your health -- and if they show your blood pressure or weight is above where it should be, you can take action and set goals," added Niles. "Some people find that watching their numbers keeps them on track, so they can make corrections as needed. But it's also important to celebrate milestones, and knowing your numbers helps you see improvements as you go along."
Pharmacy associates are available to help customers who set up an account or use the self-testing units, and will also take blood pressure readings for individuals who can't use the Lifeclinic 500 stations. The grocer also features information about blood pressure on its website.
Family-owned Wegmans operates stores in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland and Massachusetts.