Being ill is never fun, especially over a holiday period; that’s why people across Kirklees are being urged to make sure they order any repeat prescriptions they need ahead of the bank holidays.
Forgetting to get repeat prescriptions puts a lot of pressure on out-of-hours services over bank holidays when people realise they have run out of their regular medication and need to get more supplies urgently.
Local Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) are asking patients to contact their GP as soon as possible if they need regular medicines to last over the bank holidays.
Remember that you can now renew your prescriptions without having to telephone or visit the practice. You can order your medication at a time to suit you via your computer, smartphone or tablet when you register for GP online services. To register, you just need to fill out a form at your practice and you may be asked for two forms of ID, one of which should have a photo (such as a UK passport or driving licence) and the other should have your address (such as a council tax bill). This is to make sure that you only see your details when you log in and not someone else’s.
Dr Steve Ollerton, local GP and Clinical Leader of NHS Greater Huddersfield CCG, said:
“It’s often easy for people to overlook the bank holidays when it comes to ordering repeat prescriptions, but forgetting to get enough supplies can put a lot of strain on out-of-hours services which are there to deal with urgent health problems – not to issue repeat prescriptions.
“The message is simple: if you have a repeat prescription, please check that you have enough to last over the days that your GP practice is closed. That way you don’t risk getting ill if you run out or have to take up an out-of-hours GP’s time to issue another prescription.”
As well as making sure they have enough repeat prescriptions, people are also being urged to only call 999 for an ambulance or go to hospital A&E departments in a medical emergency.
You can also call NHS 111 if you urgently need medical help or advice but it’s not a life-threatening situation. You can also call NHS 111 if you’re not sure which NHS service you need and speak to a highly trained adviser, supported by healthcare professionals. They will ask you a series of questions to assess your symptoms and immediately direct you to the best medical care for you. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.
Dr David Kelly, Chair of NHS North Kirklees CCG said:
“Go to A&E or ring 999 only if you need very urgent medical attention for things like severe chest pain; breathing difficulties; severe allergic reactions or severe burns or scalds for example.”
In North Kirklees, there is the walk in centre based in the emergency department of Dewsbury and District Hospital and is open Monday to Friday 9am – 8pm and Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays 10am – 6pm, which can provide health support and advice to anyone who comes through the door.
GP practices across Kirklees are offering extra appointments over the coming months to support additional capacity in primary care and help reduce demand on A&E during the busy winter period. To find out more visit the CCG websites at:
Don’t forget, you can treat yourself for minor ailments at home with a well-stocked medicine cabinet that includes pain relief medication, cold relief products, re-hydration mixtures for diarrhoea or vomiting and a thermometer to check for fever. Your pharmacist can offer you advice on what you should keep in your medicine cabinet. You can also find out more at https://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Pharmacy/Pages/Yourmedicinecabinet.aspx
With prescribed medicines and those bought over-the-counter, follow the advice of the pharmacist, doctor or nurse. People should always read the instructions and never go over the suggested dose.
Remember, your local pharmacy can give free advice on a wide range of conditions to help you manage them. For coughs and colds and simple accidents like sprains, you don’t always need to go to your GP practice. To find your nearest pharmacy, and for more information about treating minor illnesses and preparing your medicine cabinet, visit the NHS website: www.nhs.uk