‘Keep calm’, order your repeat prescriptions and make sure you have a well stocked medicines cabinet this winter.
That’s the message from the North East’s NHS as it gears up for its busiest time of the year. As the NHS prepares for its busiest time of the year, people in the North East are being urged to help prepare themselves by ordering any repeat prescriptions that they need well in advance.
Dr Ali Tahmassebi, GP locality lead for NHS South Tees Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) said: “Many calls to the region’s out of hours service are for emergency repeat prescriptions when people have run out. This is something that can easily be avoided with some forethought and planning.”
“If you or someone you care for requires medicines regularly, make sure you order and collect repeat prescriptions in good time to ensure you or your family have enough medicine to last over the festive period.”
People in the North East are also being reminded that many of the common winter ailments and illnesses are easily treated at home, or with advice from a pharmacist – with no need to see a doctor or nurse.
Going to see your GP for common winter illnesses like coughs and colds takes up valuable NHS staff time as well as costing the NHS millions of pounds every year.
You can be prepared for most common winter illnesses by keeping a well stocked medicines cabinet at home. You can buy all of the items you need from your local pharmacist or supermarket often at very little cost.
Dr Ali Tahmassebi, said: “Winter is just about here, so plan ahead and make sure your medicines cabinet is well stocked.
“Paracetamol and ibuprofen are effective at relieving most minor aches and pains such as headaches period pain, inflammation in arthritis and sprains, while Antacids can help with stomach ache, heartburn or trapped wind and are available in various forms including chewable tablets.
“A handy first aid kit could contain bandages, plasters, a thermometer, antiseptic, eyewash solution, sterile dressings, medical tape and tweezers.”
“By having a good selection of items you can be well prepared for those minor ailments that many of us suffer over the winter period. And by doing your bit and looking after yourself, you’re freeing up valuable NHS resources for those who really need them.”
The North East’s NHS has joined forces to launch the Keep Calm campaign. You can find out more information by visiting the campaign website – www.keepcalmthiswinter.org.uk . The website has information on common winter illnesses, what the symptoms are, how to treat them, how long they will last. It includes advice on what to keep in your winter medicines cabinet so you can be ready to treat illnesses as they start.
The campaign will be seen on regional TV adverts, buses, social media and printed materials in GP practices, pharmacies and other venues across the region. It is targeting normally healthy people who suffer a winter ailment.
The campaign message of ‘Keep Calm and look after yourself’ runs across three threads including:
- Keep Calm and ask a pharmacist
- Keep Calm and call 111
- Keep Calm and antibiotics aren’t always the answer
Don’t forget to follow the campaign on Twitter: @keepcalmne
And use the hashtag #keepcalmne when you Tweet.