Health leaders are urging members of the public to order repeat prescriptions early and use NHS 111 Online for non-emergency healthcare needs ahead of the early May bank holiday weekend, which is due to coincide with industrial action by nurses.
Royal College of Nursing members plan to join a 48-hour strike from 8pm on Sunday, April 30th until 8pm on Tuesday, May 2nd - spanning the early May bank holiday.
Almost all Cheshire and Merseyside NHS Trusts are expected to be impacted.
NHS Cheshire and Merseyside’s Deputy Medical Director, Dr Fiona Lemmens, said: “Anything you can do ahead of the bank holiday to ensure you have enough prescription and over-the-counter medication will help ensure services are available for those with the most urgent needs.
“Please ensure you have enough medication. If you are already registered and need medication before next week, please use the NHS app to order your repeat prescription.”
Urgent and emergency care services will be open over the bank holiday and industrial action period and people should always call 999 or attend accident and emergency services in the event of a life or limb threatening emergency.
The NHS will continue to deliver planned care where possible, especially for patients in greatest clinical need, and we would urge the public to attend any planned appointments unless contacted directly by the NHS to reschedule.
Local NHS services will be using their websites and social media channels to provide up to date information to the public about local service disruption – so please check before you travel.
Dr Lemmens added: “If you need medical advice and are unsure where to turn, you can use the NHS 111 Online service which will take you through a symptom checker and offer advice. Many high street pharmacies will also be open throughout the bank holiday weekend.”
NHS 111 Online can tell you:
- Where to get help for your symptoms
- How to find general health information and advice
- Where to get an emergency supply of your prescribed medicine
- How to get a repeat prescription
More information about when to call 999 and when to go to A&E is available via the national NHS website.