GP surgeries across Redbridge are to benefit from a new technology in the battle against the borough’s biggest killer.

At present, 8,000 people have been diagnosed with cardiovascular diseases in Redbridge alone.

It is the single biggest preventable killer, according to Redbridge Clinical Commissioning Group.

Now, using a telemedicine system, patients can be diagnosed instantly, rather than having to go to a hospital clinic and wait to see their doctor for results.

The new system, which was tested for one year in the borough, allows GPs to carry out the ECG and transfer the results over the phone.

In the pilot phase which ended last year, one GP practice diagnosed six cases showing early warning signs of stroke and three patients who may have needed a pacemaker.

Now, almost every surgery will offer the service.

Hannah Joseph, 81, used the equipment during the pilot phase.

Last summer Mrs Joseph complained of chest pains.

She was determined to travel to Aberdeen to see her grandson graduate from university but was still ill on her return and went to see her local GP, Dr Shabana Ali at the Southdene Practice in South Woodford.

Dr Ali used the new ECG technology to record her heart beat and compare it with an ECG from two years ago.

The results showed there was a serious problem and Mrs Joseph was sent to the London Heart Hospital by ambulance, where she had two stents implants to help her circulation.

Mrs Joseph said: “It was incredible really. If it wasn’t for Dr Ali and this new technology, I wouldn’t be here today.

“I knew I was ill and was losing consciousness but Dr Ali was able to use this new machine to make sure I got the care I needed. She saved my life.”