NHS 24 is to invite all adults in Scotland over the age of 40 to complete a health check over the telephone or online.

The Scottish health helpline will begin rolling out its Life Begins at 40 service next week.

Users who complete a self-assessment questionnaire will be given health information tailored to their needs and signposted to other sources of information on local and national services.

The Scottish government says the online and telephone check-ups are part of a £15m package of services devised to help people over 40 with their health.

Other aspects will include a four year pilot project to explore the feasibility of introducing universal face to face heart ‘MOTs’ for the over 40s.

Shona Robison, Scotland’s public health minister, said Life Begins at 40 would see 74,000 Scots invited to self-assess their lifestyles and think about their health this year.

She said the Scottish government wanted to make it as easy and convenient as possible for people to check their health.

She added: “In today’s tough economic times, we need to be as efficient as possible and that means maximising our investment in the health of the Scottish people.

"By investing in health services fit for the 21st century we can save lives. We don’t just want to treat people who are ill, we want to make sure people stay healthy.”

Dr George Crooks, NHS 24 medical director, said: “Turning 40 is a significant milestone and it can traditionally be a time for making new lifestyle choices.

"Many people may be reflecting on their past and considering what’s ahead of them. It is an ideal, positive time for people to start thinking more about a healthy future.

"Your health matters and you can make a big difference by what you choose to do. By each of us knowing more about looking after our own health we will all contribute to a healthier society."