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Choose the right care this Christmas

People in Hammersmith and Fulham are being encouraged to choose the right care for their need this Christmas to help ease pressure on NHS services.Many common winter illnesses and injuries, such as colds and flu, can be treated at home with a well-stocked medicine cabinet containing:-Paracetamol and ibuprofen for pain relief -Decongestants for cold and flu symptoms such as blocked noses or sinuses-Tablets or liquids to help with heartburn and other digestion problems-Antiseptic wipes for cuts, grazes and minor wounds-Rehydration remedies-A thermometer-Plasters and sterile dressings-AntihistaminesYour local pharmacist can provide professional, confidential advice and treatment without an appointment. You can see a pharmacist for a range of problems including coughs, colds, skin conditions, aches and pains, and stomach complaints or emergency contraception. They may prescribe you with over-the-counter remedies and will be able to advise on medicines that are safe to use with any other medications you are already taking.There are a number of pharmacies open in Hammersmith and Fulham over Christmas. Click on the link below for more information. you’re still unsure which care option to choose, NHS 111 is a round-the-clock phone service, free to call from landlines and mobiles. NHS 111 offers expert advice for situations when you need help urgently but it isn’t an emergency.The telephone team are fully-trained and supported by nurses, paramedics and other medical professionals. 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 weekends.Dr Tim Spicer, chair of Hammersmith and Fulham 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. It’s vital to drink lots of fluids to stay hydrated, and be sure to wrap up warm.“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.”

Louisa Elliott ● 3020d0 Comments