With local health and care services remaining under pressure, and the upcoming August bank holiday (Monday 28 August 2023) the NHS is urging everyone to carefully consider the best source of help if them or a family member becomes unwell and keep our emergency departments free for the most serious issues.

Things such as stocking up on medicine cabinet essentials, including paracetamol, sticking plasters, indigestion remedy and anti-diarrhoeal treatments will help people.

Your community pharmacist will be happy to offer advice on essential medicines you should keep at home. By doing so, you will be best prepared to deal with minor illnesses and injuries. It’s also important to have enough repeat prescription medicine to last over the holidays.

While GP practices do offer more evening and Saturday appointments, remember your GP surgery will be closed on the Bank Holiday Monday 28 August 2023 and you need to leave enough time for your surgery to process a repeat prescription and additional time for your pharmacy to dispense it.

If you or a family member feels unwell, firstly visit the NHS 111 online symptom checker or telephone NHS 111 for help and advice.  Both are open 24 hours a day, 

As always, everybody can play a part by taking simple steps to look after themselves, their loved ones and by checking on vulnerable neighbours.

For more information on when to call 999 and when to go to A&E, visit the NHS UK website.

For more information, visit: Be prepared – Health advice for August bank holiday – Mid and South Essex Integrated Care System (ics.nhs.uk)