Choosing the right service when you become ill or are injured is important to ensure you receive the right care at the right time.
There are many options available to you, all of which can help you in a range of ways you may not know.
There are a range of coming injuries and illnesses that are best treated in your own home, with over-the-counter medication and plenty of rest.
Winter conditions can be damaging to health for those aged 65 and over, or if you have a long-term health condition. To help look after you and those you care for, learn more about staying well this winter.
NHS 111 is a quick and easy way of receiving medical help and advice. They will then be able to direct you to the best course of treatment.
Call 111 if:
- you need medical help fast, but it is not an emergency.
- you think you may need to go to A&E or another NHS Urgent Care Service.
- you don't know who to call or who can help.
- you need medical health information or reassurance.
It is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a years, and all calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.
As well as using their clinical expertise and practical knowledge to safely supply you medicines, pharmacists and chemists can also offer you advice on many problems, including coughs, colds, aches and pains. They can also help you decide if you need to see your GP.
You can talk to your pharmacist in confidence and you don't need to make an appointment. Most pharmacies now have private consultation rooms where you can discuss your issues with a member of pharmacy staff, without being overheard or disturbed.
Your local GP surgery provides a wide range of services on a whole range of health problems. They can give you advice and education about your health, carry out examinations, give treatment and vaccinations, prescribe medicine and refer you to other health or social services.
If your GP cannot help with your problem, you will usually be referred to the hospital for tests, treatment, or to see a consultant with specialist knowledge.
Minor injuries units
Minor injuries units can give you care and advice when your injury is not an emergency. Units are usually led by a highly trained team of nurses and appointments are not necessary.
Call 999 or go to your nearest Emergency Department
The Emergency Department (ED) is for major, life-threatening illnesses and injuries.
You should visit ED or call 999 for life-threatening emergencies such as:
- Blacking out or loss of consciousness
- Persistent, severe chest pain
- Breathing difficulties
- Severe bleeding that cannot be stopped