Act FAST on stroke signs

The Department of Health’s FAST campaign took placein during March to help people to identify the symptoms of stroke.


To support this, the East of England Ambulance Service held a special stroke week which from Sunday March 4 to March 10 to help increase awareness about the importance of acting on stroke signs or recognising a transiamic attack (TIA), known as a mini-stroke.

A stroke occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off and as the supply of blood becomes restricted or stops altogether, brain cells start to die causing brain damage and possibly death. During a TIA, the supply of blood to the brain is temporarily interrupted, causing the 'mini-stroke'.

The ambulance service has seen 4,008 suspected strokes since April 2011.

Activities that took place during the Trust's stroke week included:

  • a stroke summit at the Cambridge Belfry Hotel in Cambourne by the service's Stroke Lead Dan Phillips with presentations from national and regional experts
  • videos to staff and the public about the importance of recognising symptoms and a speedy response. View the public video here
  • a web poll for the public
  • a web chat with staff
  • ambulance stroke champions out and about to hand out leaflets and speak about FAST

What is FAST?

F - Face. Has the face fallen on one side? Can they smile?
A - Arms. Can they raise both arms and keep them there?
S - Speech. Is the speech slurred?
T - Time. The quicker the response, the quicker the treatment. Call 999.
You can follow the East of England Ambulance Service via our facebook page, or by following us on Twitter @EastEnglandAmb.

Need to know more?

Visit the NHS Choices  special Act FAST page for a wealth of information about stroke, patient stories and recognising the signs. There’s also an online test to see how quickly you can do FAST. 
The Stroke Association funds research into prevention, treatment and better methods of rehabilitation, and helps stroke patients and their families through information, advice and support. Visit the website for more information.


East of England Ambulance Headquarters
Whiting Way
Sat Nav postcode SG8 6NA