With less than a
month until Christmas Day, the Bristol, North Somerset and South
Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is urging patients not to
leave it to the last minute to order repeat prescriptions, to make sure they have
enough medication to last over the festive break.
Many GP practices and pharmacies will have limited opening hours between Christmas and New Year.
The NHS 111 service receives hundreds of calls every Christmas from patients who have run out of medication, which puts additional pressure on busy urgent care and out of hours NHS services.
Dr Shaba Nabi, the CCG’s Clinical Lead for Prescribing, said:
We know how busy the Christmas period can be for people and that it can be easy to forget about those other ‘essentials’ such as prescription medicines. We would urge patients to check their current medication now and take stock to see if they have enough to last over the holiday period and into the New Year.
Many people with long-term conditions already order and collect their prescriptions well in advance of Christmas, which is very helpful.
Ordering your medicines as soon as possible will make sure there is enough time for it to be processed and dispensed. This helps the NHS to reduce pressure on urgent care services, which are always busy at this time of year.
Ordering repeat prescriptions can also be done online with many GP practices. Getting regular prescriptions online can save patients time and avoid unnecessary trips to the GP. Use the ‘services near you’ search https://www.nhs.uk/service-search to check whether a GP or pharmacy currently provides this service.
A more effective flu vaccine is now available for those aged 65 and over. Our list of the local pharmacies that currently have this specific vaccine in stock is updated daily.
Further advice on how to stay well over the winter period can be found at www.nhs.uk/staywell/