Act F.A.S.T. and call 999 if you notice the signs of stroke

Published: 20 Feb 2018

Hertfordshire County Council is supporting the Act F.A.S.T. stroke campaign and is urging residents to be fully aware of the signs of stroke in themselves or others and immediately seek medical help.

The campaign, launched by Public Health England in partnership with the Stroke Association, aims to highlight that a stroke is an emergency which requires urgent medical assistance.

Stroke is the fourth single leading cause of death in the UK and approximately 100,000 people suffer a stroke every year.

The campaign urges people to use the F.A.S.T. (Face, Arms, Speech, Time) approach, a simple test to help identify the most common signs of a stroke. Residents should call 999 if they notice any of the following: 

•        Face – has their face fallen on one side? Can they smile?

•        Arms – can they raise both arms and keep them there?

•        Speech – is their speech slurred? 

Hertfordshire County Council Cabinet Member for Public Health, Richard Roberts, said: “We are pleased to be supporting the ACT F.A.S.T campaign as it is vital to promote a widespread awareness of the signs of stroke. We would encourage people to overcome any initial reluctance or uncertainty about spotting these warning signs and call 999 as soon as possible.

“A rapid response means that a person is far more likely to receive faster medical treatment which could save their life, offer them a greater chance of recovery, and also potentially reduce the development of any permanent disability such as brain damage.”

There are some other signs that people should be aware of that may also be caused by stroke. These include:

•        sudden loss of vision or blurred vision in one or both eyes

•        sudden weakness or numbness on one side of the body

•        sudden memory loss or confusion

•        sudden dizziness, unsteadiness or a sudden fall

Visit to view the council’s promotion of the campaign and for any further information regarding how to spot signs of stroke.