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Health leaders’ Easter plea to patients

Residents are urged to be ready for Easter by planning ahead for repeat prescriptions and using NHS services wisely.
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GP surgeries will be closed during the Easter weekend from Friday 14 April to Monday 17 April. By stocking up on medicine cabinet essentials at home and planning ahead for any necessary repeat prescriptions, patients can ensure they make the most of the Easter holiday.

Dr Gary Howsam, CCG Clinical Chair and local GP said “Local health services are bracing themselves for a very busy time over the next couple of weeks, so it’s important people ensure they are prepared and choose the right service for their illness or injury.” 

“Ordering and collecting new prescriptions can take several days, so do check you have enough medication or order in plenty of time. Coughs, colds and diarrhoea can easily be treated at home or with advice from your local pharmacist, many of which will be open across the weekend, even Easter Sunday.”

“If you do become unwell and need advice or medical treatment quickly, then you should call NHS 111 who will direct you to the local service that can best meet your needs. It is important that emergency services are left for those people who really need them.”

Patients across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough can also make use of the new ‘MyHealth Cambridgeshire and Peterborough’ app to help them find services in their local area. 

Free to download and quick and easy to use, the app directs you to your nearest appropriate NHS service such as GPs, pharmacies, minor injury units, and dentists, based on your location or postcode. The app is available to download for iOS via Apple Store and Android via Google Play by searching for ‘MyHealth C&P CCG’. 

David Monk, Operations Manager at Addenbrooke’s A&E department, said: “Over the Easter weekend we often see an increase in the number of patients turning up to A&E. 

“As we prioritise treating the sickest first, I’d urge people to think twice before coming to hospital and ask the public to choose the right service first time - if it isn’t an emergency, use alternatives, such as pharmacies, NHS 111 and minor injury units.” 

Here are ways to treat medical problems and services residents can use over Easter:

NHS 111 

Open 24/7, 365 days a year, NHS 111 connects patients to a team of fully trained call advisers who are supported by experienced nurses, paramedics, and GPs. 

They will ask questions to assess the symptoms, and give healthcare advice or direct the caller to a local NHS service. If necessary they can also call an ambulance or direct people straight to A&E. Calls to NHS 111 are free from a landline or mobile phone.

Pharmacies 

Pharmacies are open across the area during Easter; some are even open on Easter Sunday. Pharmacies can help with a range of things including aches, hangovers, colds, emergency contraception, and non-prescription medication. Opening times for pharmacies can be found HERE or you can dial 111.

Mental Health – 111 option 2

There is a new First Response Service (FRS) in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough which gives those in mental health crisis the opportunity to get access to help quickly, by calling NHS 111 and selecting option 2. 

The new service allows patients or carers to speak to specially-trained mental health staff who can provide advice, support, and signposting to other services. The service is available 24/7, 365 days a year. 

Minor Illness and Injury Units

Minor Illness and Injury Units can treat a range of minor illnesses and injuries such as sprains and strains, broken bones, minor burns and scalds, minor head and eye injuries, bites and stings. Opening hours are as follows:

Peterborough MIIU

Monday – Sunday: 8am-8pm, 

Open seven days a week, including weekends and Bank Holidays

Ely MIU

Monday – Friday: 8.30am-6pm

Saturday/Sunday: 8.30-6pm

Bank holidays: 8.30-6pm

Easter Sunday: 8.30-6pm

Doddington MIU

Monday – Friday: 8.30am-6pm

Saturday/Sunday: 9am-5pm

Bank holidays: 9am-5pm

Easter Sunday: 9am-5pm

North Cambs Hospital, Wisbech

Monday -Friday – 8.30-6pm

Saturday/Sunday – closed

04/04/2017