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Know your healthcare options this bank holiday weekend

People in Birmingham and Solihull are being encouraged to know their options for getting medical help this bank holiday weekend.

With GP practices being closed on Monday 31 May, it is important to know where people to seek help and advice when they need it.

Dr Will Taylor, Clinical Chair at NHS Birmingham Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “For urgent healthcare needs, patients should think 111 first. Patients can either go online at 111.nhs.uk or call 111; it is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Advisers will be able to direct patients to the most appropriate service, including walk-in or urgent care centres, or can book a timeslot at A&E if necessary.

Dr Taylor added: “A well-stocked medicine cabinet is very useful in helping people to treat common illnesses at home, but if necessary patients can visit a local pharmacy for minor issues or to get over-the-counter medications.”

Some GP practices may be offering a limited number of extended access appointments on 31 May, but these must be booked in advance by calling your practice as normal.

Options during the May bank holiday weekend:

  • Self-care – make sure you have a well-stocked medicine cabinet at home, so you can deal with minor injuries and ailments at home
  • Pharmacy – your local pharmacist can give you quick, confidential advice on lots of common illnesses, as well as over-the-counter medication. Find your nearest pharmacy open on the May bank holiday here.
  • NHS 111 – if you’re worried about an urgent medical concern, or not sure which NHS service you need, you can either call 111 or visit 111.nhs.uk online 24 hours a day, seven days a week
  • GP practice extended access appointments – some practices will be offering limited appointments, but these must be booked in advance through your GP practice.
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