The next bank holiday is on Monday and NHS Milton Keynes wants to help people choose well when using local services.
In particular they want to encourage people to think about using their local pharmacy as a source of vital health information and support.
Janet Corbett, Head of Prescribing and Clinical Quality, said: “Bank holidays are always very busy for the local health service so it’s important to remind patients the services that are available, and the things they need to do to prepare.
“For example, patients with long term conditions are advised to get their repeat prescriptions ready well ahead of the bank holiday.
“It is also vital that patients know about their local pharmacies, what the opening times are and what services can be offered.”
Many people do not know, for example, that pharmacies can offer:
Dispensing medicines - and how to use them safely, as well as getting rid of old or out of date medicine emergency hormonal contraception, or ‘the morning after pill’ is available at your local pharmacist
Minor ailments - a pharmacist can help with treatments for conjunctivitis, thrush, hayfever and more without the patient needing to see their doctor for a prescription.
The right type of cough and flu remedies.
The pharmacy rotas have been published and are available to download.
1. Where possible, self-care and remember you can always seek advice from NHS Direct which operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 0845 46 47, or online at www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk
2. Don’t forget you can speak to your local pharmacist, who can provide confidential, expert advice and treatment for a range of common illnesses and complaints. To find your nearest pharmacy, text PHARMACY to 64746. You can also do this on your smartphone via the NHS Milton Keynes website.
3. Injuries that give more cause for concern such as sprains, strains, minor burns and wounds can be treated at: Milton Keynes Urgent Care Centre is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at Milton Keynes hospital campus, Standing Way, Eaglestone, MK6 5LD
4. If it’s an emergency and you need care after hours, call the Milton Keynes Out of Hours Service on 01908 201022. The service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
5. Accident & Emergency (A&E) is only for the most urgent care such as serious accidents or medical emergencies.