No one wants 2017 winter ruined by illness, especially if it can be avoided with a few simple steps beforehand. Residents, particularly those with a long-term condition, should make sure they get their prescription medicines stocked up.
Many common winter illnesses and injuries, such as colds and flu, can be treated at home with a well-stocked medicine cabinet
Pharmacists are fully qualified to give advice on the best course of action to take should people start to feel unwell. Antibiotics cannot treat minor common illnesses such as colds, sore throats, coughs and earaches, so it is best to speak to a pharmacist who can give advice on the right medication to take. It is also important to drink lots of fluids, rest and have at least one hot meal a day.
The CCG is in the middle of a public consultation on Urgent Care Services however, the 6 minor Injury Units (MIUs) throughout East Riding of Yorkshire are still open and operated by highly skilled qualified practitioners who can treat injuries such as minor fractures, sprains, minor burns, cuts and bruises. Patients should use a local minor injury unit when they need treatment for a minor injury that DOES NOT require a visit to A&E or medical appointment.
If you’re still unsure which care option to choose, NHS 111 is a round-the-clock phone service, 365 days per year and free to call from landlines and mobiles. NHS 111 offers expert advice. They will ask patients a series of questions to assess their symptoms and give advice on where to go.
The telephone teams are fully trained. If they think you should see a healthcare professional they will direct you to the correct service for your need, including GP practices that are open at the weekends.
Dr Gina Palumbo, local GP and Chair for East Riding of Yorkshire CCG said: “During the winter months an increase in winter illnesses and injuries puts additional pressure on health services, so it’s important to use your NHS wisely.
“Self-care is important all year round but can be particularly essential during the winter months. Keep yourself warm. If you start to feel unwell and are not sure how best to look after yourself, then get help from your pharmacist quickly before it gets too serious. Many folk do know what to do so you can call upon a family member, friend or neighbour to help. If you are on repeat medication then think ahead and make sure you have enough to last through the difficult waether periods.
“We would also encourage people to check in regularly with any neighbours or family members who might be vulnerable in the cold and the dark.
“A&Es come under a lot of pressure at this time, so using services sensibly not only means that you will get the most suitable advice or treatment as quickly as possible, it also frees up emergency services for people with life-threatening illnesses or injuries.