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Use your pharmacy, not your GP or A&E

PUBLISHED: 09:01 24 May 2018 | UPDATED: 09:01 24 May 2018

People are being urged to use their pharmacy over the Bank Holiday Weekend. Picture: QEH

People are being urged to use their pharmacy over the Bank Holiday Weekend. Picture: QEH

The Queen Elizabeth Hospital

People in West Norfolk are being urged to support hard working doctors and nurses over the Bank Holiday Weekend.

West Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group, which buys health services locally, is calling on patients to consider visiting a pharmacist or calling the 111 service for minor injuries to ensure they receive the right treatment quickly.

Pharmacists are able to provide a wide range of healthcare advice for minor injuries, infections, emergency contraception along with hay fever symptoms and coughs and colds.

Upwell GP and CCG chair Dr Paul Williams said: “We are asking people to consider carefully which NHS service they choose over the Bank Holiday weekend to support our busy front line staff.

“Pharmacists are able to provide advice and guidance for a number of minor injuries and illnesses. By visiting a pharmacist, patients will be able to get their medical advice quickly.

“The 111 service is also able to provide a good source of advice and support to help residents.

“Bank Holiday is a traditionally a busy time the NHS so we would really appreciate patients thinking carefully about what is the best service for them. It is important that we ensure that the urgent care services are free for the people who need them most.”

The CCG is also asking for people to consider buying their hay fever remedies over the counter rather than asking their GP for a prescription in order to save more than £100,000.

The CCG spent £121,332 prescribing nasal sprays and anti-histamines last year when cheaper hay fever treatments can be purchased from pharmacies, shops and supermarkets.

It says it could save a total of £2m if people purchased over the counter drugs such as paracetamol and ibuprofen rather than asking for a prescription.

Pharmacies open on Bank Holiday Monday are:

S&S (Chemists), 67 Market Place, Burnham Market (10am - 1pm)

Boots, 11-13 Wales Court, Downham Market (10am - 4pm)

Boots, 7-10 Market Place, Fakenham (10am - 4pm)

Boots, 19 High Street, Hunstanton (10am - 4pm)

Boots, 94 - 96 High Street, King’s Lynn and Unit A3, Hardwick Retail Park (both 10am - 4pm).

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