Wintry launch at Botanics for nation healthcare campaign
Health Secretary Shona Robison met with schoolchildren to highlight the importance of being prepared for seasonal illnesses at the winter-clad Royal Botanic Garden today. During the event, Ms Robison encouraged everyone to take a few simple steps to ensure they can take care of themselves and their families and have a healthy festive period.
NHS 24’s Medical Director, Dr Laura Ryan, joined the Minister to launch the national Be Health-Wise this Winter campaign which outlines the easy ways people can make sure they can look after themselves and their family if anyone falls ill. These steps are:
- Check your GP and local pharmacy surgery opening times
- Don’t run out of your repeat prescription, order only what you need and in plenty of time
- Be prepared for common illnesses by stocking up your medicine cupboard
Health Secretary Shona Robison said: “Planning ahead can help ensure that coughs, colds and minor ailments don’t become a big problem for you and your family over winter. Stocking up on remedies is a good idea to help tackle common conditions. Knowing where to get help if someone does become unwell is also important so it’s good to know your local GP and pharmacy opening times that may vary over the holidays. We also have a really good resource online at nhsinform.scot which includes self-help guides so you can quickly and easily check symptoms and decide what to do next.”
Dr Laura Ryan also stressed the importance of having enough supplies of any regular medication you may need to last through the festive break: “NHS 24 is always busy at Christmas and New Year, and a lot of calls are about medicines. Making sure you have enough of any repeat prescription to last can save you interrupting your family time having to call us! We have a great team of pharmacists here but your local community pharmacist is the first place to go.
“It’s also worth stressing that those who are eligible should get the annual flu vaccination. In addition, while it’s important to be prepared, you should be reassured that help is there if you need it – from GPs working in the out of hours service, to nurses, pharmacists and physiotherapists. If you need help that can’t wait until your GP reopens, or you can’t get to the pharmacy, you should call NHS 24 on 111 or visit www.nhsinform.scot“
NHSScotland supports the Be Health-Wise this Winter campaign in partnership with NHS 24, the Scottish Ambulance Service and all 14 Scottish Health Boards.
General advice and information on how to stay healthy this winter can be found at www.nhsinform.scot or contact NHS inform on 0800 22 44 88.
The four key steps that Be Health-Wise this Winter is recommending everyone take in preparation for their health this winter are:
Be prepared for common illnesses with at-home remedies e.g. pain relief and rehydration salts
Many children and adults pick up common winter ailments such as a colds, flu-like illness or upset tummies. These can often be effectively treated at home with readily available medicine. Parents are reminded to have remedies that are suitable for children.
Make sure you check any repeat prescription
If you or someone you care for requires medicines regularly, make sure you have enough medicine to last over the Christmas holiday period but please don’t over order. Remember to pick it up in plenty of time too.
Know when your GP surgery and local pharmacy will be open
Your community pharmacist is a good local resource and they can help if you have run out of any prescribed medication. They can also help with a range of minor illnesses such as impetigo and certain urinary tract infections. Your pharmacist can also advise on what’s best to have in your medicine cupboard for minor ailments or illnesses.