The NHS is urging people to make the right healthcare choice when they are seeking medical help or advice over the holiday period.
Making the right choice this Christmas doesn’t just mean picking the perfect present or selecting your favourite flavour from the chocolate tin.
A range of healthcare options, from local pharmacies to NHS 111, are available over the holidays, and each option is best suited for different medical needs.
Over the festive season, a number of local pharmacies in Birmingham and Solihull will be open, offering quick, confidential advice on lots of common illnesses, as well as over-the-counter medication.
You can find pharmacy opening hours over Christmas and New Year’s here. Please do not visit a pharmacy if you have COVID-19 symptoms.
While many people enjoy a break this week, your local NHS is working really hard to help people who need our help. That’s why patients should use NHS 111 first to help NHS urgent and emergency care services maintain social distancing and ensure that patients receive the right care in the right place, in a timely and safe way. It is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can call 111 or visit the website 111.nhs.uk.
Dr Richard Mendelsohn, Chief Medical Officer at NHS Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “There are a range of healthcare services available to people in Birmingham and Solihull throughout the festive period.
“There are many common illnesses and injuries that can be treated at home, so make sure you have a well-stocked medicine cabinet, to avoid having to venture out. Good items to have include your usual pain relief, diarrhoea relief, rehydration sachets, antihistamines and heartburn and indigestion remedies, as well as first aid essentials, such as plasters, dressings, eye wash and bandages.
“There are steps we can all take to look after ourselves and loved ones, such as wearing a mask indoors, taking regular lateral flow tests and getting your COVID and flu vaccines.”