Anyone feeling unwell over the Easter bank holidays can still access a variety of healthcare services when their GP practice is closed.
The Primary Care Access Service (PCAS) offers appointment times outside traditional GP practice hours. Patients can pre-book – via their GP practice - routine evening or weekend appointments with a healthcare professional at one of five neighbourhood hubs. Also, when GP practices are closed, patients who require urgent but not life-threatening assistance may also be offered an appointment at one of the five neighbourhood hubs via NHS 111.
A list of Tameside and Glossop pharmacy opening times have been published for the bank holidays - Friday 2 April (Good Friday), Sunday 4 April (Easter Sunday) and Monday 5 April (Easter Monday).
Pharmacies are the first place to go for a minor health concern and will also be open on Saturday 3 April (Easter Saturday) as this is a normal working day. Check the NHS website for more details: www.nhs.uk.
As qualified professionals, pharmacists are experts in medicines and can offer clinical advice and over-the-counter medicines for a range of minor illnesses, such as cough, colds, sore throats, tummy trouble and aches and pains. People can speak to a pharmacist in confidence, in a private area, about the most personal symptoms, and should telephone their usual pharmacy before travelling as opening times may vary over the bank holidays.
Some pharmacies are providing a delivery service for residents who have no support. People are encouraged to reduce the demand and pressure on this service if they are feeling unwell and self-isolating by asking friends, relatives or neighbours to collect their medicines in the first instance.
Anyone with a health condition that cannot be treated by a pharmacist should call NHS 111 or go online https://111.nhs.uk/, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
By Contacting NHS 111 before going to an Emergency Department (ED) or Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC), it will:
- Ensure you GET THE RIGHT HELP in the right place
- Help keep you, your family and friends SAFE by avoiding too many people being in the waiting room
- Help you be seen in an agreed time slot
Prior to the bank holidays, patients who need to contact their GP practice should visit the practice website to complete a confidential online consultation form for non-urgent health needs, to receive a response before the end of the next working day, or call to discuss a face-to-face or virtual (telephone or video) appointment.
Anyone with coronavirus symptoms, no matter how mild, is advised not to visit their GP practice, pharmacy or hospital. It is important that they self-isolate for at least 10 days from when their symptoms started and get a test immediately, so that it’s within 5 days of being symptomatic. To book a test or order a home testing kit go online www.nhs.uk/coronavirus or telephone 119.
Dr Asad Ali, Co-Chair at NHS Tameside and Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “When GP practices are closed, patients who have had a clinical assessment via 111 and are deemed to require urgent but not life-threatening assistance may be offered an appointment at one of the neighbourhood hubs.”
For a full list of pharmacy opening times, the pharmacy delivery service, primary care services plus access to other healthcare services including emergency support, visit: https://www.tamesideandglossopccg.org/accessingcare