Members of the public are being reminded by their local NHS of the full range of healthcare options available to them over the bank holiday weekend.
People are also being encouraged to keep their medicine cabinets fully stocked over the bank holiday on Monday, August 27, should they need to treat any minor ailments such as coughs and colds which do not persist with over the counter remedies.
Dr Mike Guy, medical director for NHS North of Tyne, working on behalf of Newcastle and North Tyneside Primary Care Trusts and Northumberland Healthcare Foundation Trust, said: “There are lots of ways people can get the right treatment over the bank holiday. You can get expert advice from your local community pharmacy, go to an NHS walk-in centre or minor injury clinic, go online at www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk or call NHS Direct on 0845 4647.
“NHS Direct will be able to give you help and advice as well as opening times for all out-of-hours NHS services and community pharmacies over the bank holiday weekend.”
There are lots of different ways people can access the right NHS service and make sure they get the right treatment, at the right time and place that is convenient for them.
The Choose Well campaign uses a colour coded thermometer to help people to link their symptoms with a particular NHS service which is right for their need (see fact box below).
Minor ailments such as hangovers, upset stomachs, headaches, sunburn and hay fever can all be treated at home with a well-stocked medicine cabinet and plenty of rest.
Your local pharmacy provides expert advice on common health problems and many pharmacies have early and late opening hours. You can cheaply buy many medicines over the counter.
Details of these are available at www.northoftyne.nhs.uk and from NHS Direct.
GP practices and out of hours GP services. Please check with your own GP practice for exact opening hours.
If you need to see a GP when your own practice is closed, contact the out of hours GP service – Northern Doctors Urgent Care on: 0300 123 4343. Open 6.30pm to 8.00am on weekdays, open 24 hours a day on weekends and bank holidays.
Out of hours and urgent dental treatment. You can contact the out of hours dental service on 0845 608 0324. If you do not have a dentist or are experiencing problems accessing treatment, ring NHS Direct.
NHS Walk-in Centres or NHS Minor Injuries Units. For treatment of minor illnesses or injuries without an appointment choose an NHS Walk-in Centre or Minor Injuries Unit. Children under two years old can only be treated at GP led walk-in centres – ring ahead to check.