Scrumptious chocolate eggs are not the only important feature of Easter, knowing how to access health services over the holiday is also key.
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde have produced a must-have ‘Easter Guide to your health services’ which details exactly how the public should use their health service over the Easter period, particularly on the two public holidays, Friday, April 3rd and Monday, April 6th. These two days will see some NHS services – including GP surgeries – closed.
The booklet is being distributed widely throughout GP surgeries, health centres, clinics, pharmacies and opticians in the Greater Glasgow and Clyde area and includes vital information such as the opening hours of pharmacies, advice on how to access health services and information on NHS 24.
Dr Linda de Caestecker, NHSGGC’s Director of Public Health, explained: “As always, our hospitals and community health services make plans that are flexible enough to meet increased demand over the holiday period.
“But being prepared is increasingly about preventing admissions. The key to this is ensuring the public are prepared for GP surgeries and dental surgeries being closed over the Easter long weekend, and knowing what to do if they feel unwell.
“Many common ailments, such as colds and flu or stomach upsets, can be treated without going to GPs or local hospitals - pharmacists often provide the appropriate help. By using healthcare services appropriately over the Good Friday and Easter Monday public holidays, pressure on the system is relieved, patients will receive speedy and suitable advice and we are able to direct help to where it is needed most.”
After winter, Easter is the busiest time of year for Scotland's health services. NHS 24 Medical Director Professor George Crooks said: "Easter falls slightly earlier this year and as such, there are still many common illnesses circulating within communities. The Be Health-Wise This Easter campaign wants to remind people of the small steps they can take to ensure illness doesn’t ruin their Easter.
“Being prepared by having enough repeat medication to cover you and having some simple home remedies available can make all the difference if illness strikes. It is also important to plan ahead for any required repeat prescriptions over the Easter break, so please order and collect in good time. We would also remind people of the wide range of health information available at NHS inform.”
General advice and information on how to stay healthy this Easter can be found at www.nhsinform.co.uk or contact NHS inform on 0800 22 44 88.
Notes to Editors
Check you have cold and flu remedies
Common ailments such as colds can often be effectively treated at home with readily available medicine such as pain relief, cough mixture and cold remedies. Parents are reminded to restock their medicine cabinet with child-friendly remedies.
Use your local pharmacy
Your pharmacist can offer advice or help if you need over-the-counter remedies or have run out of any prescribed medication. You can also pick up plasters and antiseptic creams to prepare for any minor accidents.
Make sure you have enough repeat prescription.
If you or someone you care for requires medicines regularly, make sure you order and collect repeat prescriptions in good time to ensure you have enough medicine to last over the holiday period. Only order what you need.
Know when your GP surgery will be open
Your local doctor’s surgery may be closed for four days during the Easter weekend from Good Friday to Easter Monday (April 3th- April 6th).
For further information either telephone 0141 201 4429 or email [email protected].