Winter health

While things will be a little different this winter, the NHS is still here to help should you suddenly fall ill or get injured.

We’re still open

Health services are open but may be operating in a different way – to keep you and our staff safe. Social distancing and infection control procedures mean there is less space in GP and A&E waiting rooms.   Please help your local NHS by using the most appropriate service.

Face coverings

Face coverings are compulsory in all healthcare settings to protect you and our staff. Children under 11 and those unable to put on or wear a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or disability do not have to wear a face covering.

Coronavirus/COVID-19 symptoms

If you have coronavirus symptoms – such as a high temperature, loss of taste or smell or a new continuous cough –  stay home, self-isolate and visit the NHS website. You can also phone 111 for advice or 119 to book a coronavirus test.

If you need help in a life threatening emergency please tell the 999 call taker that you have symptoms (or have tested positive for coronavirus) and mention this to paramedics on arrival.

NHS 111

This service is for people who:

  • Need medical care fast, but it’s not an emergency
  • Don’t know who to call for medical help
  • Think they need to go to A&E or another NHS urgent care service
  • Need health information or reassurance about what to do next

NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Go to (for people aged 5 and over only) or call 111.

NHS 111 (BSL) interpreter service. You can also call 18001 111 on a textphone.

Visit your pharmacy

Your pharmacist can provide a wide range of support, without having to make an appointment including:

  • Providing information and advice on the safe and effective use of medicines that have been prescribed by your GP
  • Providing you with self-care advice on coughs, colds or other minor ailments
  • Providing you with advice on healthier lifestyles, such as stopping smoking and sexual health
  • Providing advice about the disposal of unwanted medicines
  • Signposting you to other services or support organisations.

GP practice

The way you access your practice has changed. Your initial appointment may be over the telephone or by video. A face-to-face appointment will be offered if necessary.

Get in touch with your GP practice if you have concerns regarding ongoing conditions, ear discharge / pain, rashes, and stomach aches. If you have any cancer symptoms such as a lump in your breast, changes in bowel habits, blood in your pee or poo, unexplained weight loss, moles that appear to change or cough that you’ve had for three weeks or more, you should get them checked out.

999 / A&E

These services should only be used for life or limb-threatening serious illness or injury. Please help other people by avoiding calling 999 or visiting A&E or emergency department unless it really is necessary.

 Urgent dental treatment

 Do not contact your GP  surgery as they they cannot provide dental services.

  • phone your dentist – do not visit the dental surgery without an appointment
  • use the NHS 111 online service if you cannot contact your dentist or you do not have one.

Mental health services

If you’re registered with a GP practice in Kirklees call 0800 183 0558. Support is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and people don’t have to have used mental health services before. Carers, or those concerned about a loved one or friend, can also call for advice.

Looking after yourself this winter

The return of the cold weather doesn’t necessarily mean more illnesses.  Follow our simple tips and help us help you stay well this winter.

Keep up to date with the latest weather forecast

Children, people with long term conditions and older people are more likely to experience problems in cold weather so it’s important to be prepared for cold and icy weather. The Met Office has a system in place to alert people when there is likely to be any extreme weather that could have an impact on their health as well as providing information. You can access the latest weather warning on alerts on the Met Office website or by following them on Twitter (@MetOffice).

Age UK’s top tips for keeping warm and well
Age UK has published a great deal of information to help people keep warm indoors and out this winter. You’ll find all this information, including guidance on heating your home and details about the financial help available to do this, on the charity’s website here.

Kirklees Council’s winter information
On the council’s website here, you’ll find a range of winter information, from getting out and about safely in winter weather to keeping your home warm and reducing your energy bills.

Winter driving checklist
Kirklees Council operates a winter maintenance service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, whenever the weather demands, to allow all road users to move about as safely as possible. This winter page on the council’s website gives gritting and weather updates, emergency contact numbers and guidance including a winter driving checklist.

Flooding advice
Kirklees Council has information on its website here that can help you reduce the risk of flooding. You’ll also find a ten minute household emergency plan template and an emergency flooding checklist that can help you be prepared and minimise your risk.