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pharmacyfirstIf you become unwell or have an accident over the coming Bank Holiday weekend, it is important to know who to contact and where to go for health advice and treatment – the Island’s NHS is advising residents to think ‘Pharmacy First’. 

Between Friday 3rd April and Monday 6th April, all GP Practices on the Island will be closed. If you take regular medication, now is the time to plan ahead and make sure you have a sufficient supply of everything you may need to see you through the four day break.

Chris Smith, Head of Ambulance, NHS 111 and the Emergency Department at St. Mary’s Hospital, said:

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“Please use NHS services appropriately over the bank holiday weekend. Public holidays are always an extremely busy time for all of our urgent and emergency services.

“We want to be able to ensure we can attend to those people with more serious conditions in a timely manner which means anyone with minor illnesses are encouraged to go along to a community Pharmacy for advice.  Pharmacists are medically trained so if your pharmacist thinks your health problem is something more serious, they will be aware when you need to see a doctor.”

A number of community Pharmacies on the Island will be open on Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday. Pharmacists are highly qualified professionals and experts in medicines and are a great source of help and advice for minor ailments such as colds, fever, earache, eye infections and more. You can call into any pharmacy and arrange to have a private NHS consultation with the pharmacist to talk about treatment for common illnesses, in confidence, with no appointment needed.

Local pharmacies have recently introduced a Pharmacy First scheme on the Island. If you or your children are exempt from prescription charges then you are able to get treatment for the conditions listed below for FREE, without having to wait to see a GP for a prescription, all you will need to do is a have a quick, confidential chat with the pharmacist.

If you need medical help fast, but it’s not a 999 emergency, the NHS 111 service based at St Mary’s Hospital is able to advise and direct you to the service which can help. You can telephone 111, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

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The Emergency Department at St. Mary’s Hospital and 999 are for life-threatening emergencies, such as:

[alert-success]• loss of consciousness
• acute confused state and fits that are not stopping
• persistent, severe chest pain
• breathing difficulties
• severe bleeding that cannot be stopped
• If you have been referred by your GP for urgent assessment[/alert-success]

For a list of Pharmacy opening times over the Bank Holiday weekend, see below.


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