Health leaders across Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire are reminding local people that pharmacies are open during the festive period.
Emergency pharmacies will be open between Christmas and New Year, at a time when many GP surgeries will be closed or have reduced opening hours.
Your local pharmacy can offer health advice and medicines for a wide range of common health problems.
- If you’re feeling under the weather and not getting better, get early advice from your local pharmacist. They can give advice and recommend treatments for minor illnesses.
- Your local pharmacist may also be able to supply medicines for selected minor ailments and emergency contraception without a GP prescription. Please check with your pharmacist first.
- Please order and collect your repeat prescriptions in good time to avoid running out of medicine over the Bank Holiday weekend. If you do run out, your local pharmacist may be able to provide a small emergency supply. You can also phone 111 for advice about emergency prescriptions.
Dr Lesley Ward, Clinical Lead for Urgent Care at Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said:
With winter in full force and the festive period fast approaching, pharmacists are a hugely important NHS resource. They are healthcare experts on the high street and can advise on over the counter medicines that can help treat minor conditions at home.
Paying a visit to your local pharmacist at the first sign of winter illness can help you stay well and keep A&E staff free to treat people with serious or life-threatening conditions. You can also dial 111 at any time, all year round, for free expert advice on which NHS service is best for your needs.
Lead pharmacist Ade Williams from Bedminster Pharmacy said:
As pharmacists, we can help you with a range of medical conditions. We can dispense repeat prescriptions without the need to visit your GP, give advice on treating coughs and colds, and help you manage long-term conditions such as diabetes and asthma.
We can also provide confidential, expert advice and help you to decide if you need to use another health service. No appointment is usually needed and many pharmacies have separate consulting rooms to see patients.
The free Service Finder app is available on smartphones and offers on-the-go advice of local NHS services. You can also download the HANDi app that provides expert advice and guidance on common childhood illnesses.