PATIENTS at an Ayr doctor’s surgery have benefitted from home blood pressure monitors which allow them to keep track of their health.

It is hoped the new scheme could lessen ‘whitecoat syndrome’, where patients experience a spike in blood pressure through anxiety in the doctor’s surgery.

Fullarton Medical Practice have provided over 70 patients with the service, which has also helped cut down waiting times for appointments.

The smart device known as ‘Florence’ or ‘Flo’ has revolutionised the way that people check their blood pressure levels.

Patients data is sent through a system on their mobile phones and helps flag up any signs of high blood pressure also known as hypertension.

Practice manager Joanne Gibson has noticed a significant improvement in the “quality of care” that is being provided thanks to the smart tech.

She told the Ayr Advertiser: “In terms of the benefits for patients there is no waiting times for appointments. It’s improving the quality of care and management of patients and with Flo we can help get an early diagnosis.”

Hypertension or high blood pressure is one of the main reasons for patients attending their GP, with 1.2 million appointments taken up every year in Scotland for blood pressure. At Fullarton, Joanne has noticed the difference with less appointments opening up more time slots.

She said: “We have certainly noticed the difference. People can lead normal lives, can go to their work, carry on with normal activities, they can even take it on holiday.”

“As well as saving time. It can also speed up the process if a patient requires medication such as a contraceptive pill, they can quickly self-check their blood pressure without going through a full appointment.

An estimated 64,000 people in NHS Ayrshire and Arran have a diagnosis of hypertension, putting patients at risk of heart failure and kidney disease.