Health leaders across South and East Staffordshire are reminding us to think about our local community pharmacists for common health conditions May Bank Holiday Monday (7 May).
With GP surgeries closed and hospitals dealing with the most urgent, life-threatening cases, pharmacies are the go-to service for help with common illnesses like coughs and sore throats, and minor emergencies such as rashes and insect bites.
They can help advise on the best over-the-counter medications and first aid items to keep in your home.
Dr Gill Hall, local Pharmacist and member of the Local Pharmacy Committee, said: “Many people are amazed when they actually see what a pharmacist can do beyond dispensing prescriptions,
“We’re highly trained experts who can give professional, confidential medical advice on over the counter medicines straight away.
“You don’t have to spend hours in a waiting room or days for an appointment you probably don’t need for many conditions. Or, if we can’t sort it, we can suggest the best service for you to go to. Either way, you’ll be getting back to good health sooner.”
Taking steps before the Bank Holiday weekend will also mean you’re prepared to ease symptoms you may have, with a well-stocked medicine cabinet.
This should include:
- Painkillers like paracetamol and ibuprofen
- Antihistamines for hay fever and allergic reactions to stings and bites
- Diarrhoea relief
- Constipation relief
- Throat lozenges
Always take remedies as advised by your pharmacist or the instructions on the packet, to keep your discomfort under control.
If you need urgent advice over the bank holiday weekend, contact NHS 111. It’s free, available 24/7 and they’ll give you healthcare advice or direct you to the right local service, including the out of hours GP service, if you need any further help.”
You can also get health advice through the NHS Choices website - www.nhs.uk
A list of local pharmacies open on the May Bank Holiday can be found on the NHS England website - https://www.england.nhs.uk/mids-east/our-work/pharm-info/