Get ready and know where to go for NHS help this Easter

Leading doctors from the NHS in Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin are encouraging people to make sure they are properly prepared before the bank holiday.

GP practices will be closed over the Easter bank holiday period, so as well as stocking up on hot crossed buns and Easter eggs, people should also make sure they get their repeat prescriptions in time, so they don’t run out of essential medication over the holiday period.

It’s essential that if you need regular medication, then you get your repeat prescription in to your GP surgery in good time before Good Friday.  Remember, GP practices will need at least 48 hours notice to make sure that repeat prescriptions are available.

Patients are also being asked to make sure they know how to get the most appropriate NHS help and treatment.

Dr Peter Clowes, Clinical Lead for Urgent Care at Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group said:

People often turn up at Accident and Emergency (A&E) departments or call 999 with illnesses and injuries that could be better treated more quickly elsewhere, or at home.  We need to make sure we keep A&E and ambulances free for those who have life threatening or critical illnesses only.

The best options are:

Pharmacists for free, qualified health advice at any time. From coughs and colds to aches and pains, pharmacists can give you expert help on everyday illnesses and answer questions about prescribed and over-the-counter medicines.

Minor Injuries Units in Oswestry, Ludlow or Bridgnorth provide an alternative to A&E if you need treatment for a minor injury over the bank holiday period. The wait is usually shorter.

They are open across the weekend and Bank Holiday and treat a range of conditions (except Whitchurch MIU which is temporarily suspended at the weekend and Bank Holiday and will reopen from 9am till 5pm on weekdays from Tuesday 22 April). They treat conditions like:

  • cuts and lacerations
  • soft tissue injuries for example: sprains and bruises
  • bites
  • wound infections
  • foreign bodies in the eyes nose and ears
  • head injuries (with no loss of consciousness)
  • fractures that require plaster only
  • burns and scalds.

“The MIUs are staffed by experienced Nurses and specifically trained Emergency Nurse Practitioners,” said Steve Gregory, Director of Nursing at Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust. “They are trained to be able to treat a range of different conditions which means that people can get care locally.

NHS 111 is there for anyone who needs care quickly, but it is not life-threatening and you don’t need an ambulance. Just call 111 at any time.  When you call 111 you will be assessed and provided with the healthcare advice you need or signposted to the most appropriate local health service.

You can call Shropdoc If you need urgent, out-of-hours GP advice when you own GP practice is closed by calling 08444 06 88 88.  Shropdoc provides urgent medical services for Shropshire patients when their own surgery is closed and when they cannot safely wait until their GP surgery is next open.