The NHS is reminding people that healthcare services, including GP practices, minor injuries units and walk-in centres, will continue to support patients who are NOT showing symptoms of coronavirus this Easter.
Patients who want advice from their GP or an appointment this Good Friday or Bank Holiday Monday are asked to inquire online or to call first. Do not attend your GP practice without checking. Some surgeries are working together and subsequently if asked to attend a surgery it may not be at your usual location. Please contact your registered practice who will advise the best consultation process. For non-urgent queries please access www.111.nhs.uk first.
For minor injuries and illnesses, people are being advised to treat themselves at home using a well-stocked first aid kit containing antiseptic cream, plasters and painkillers.
A wide range of healthcare advice on minor illnesses, infections, headaches, emergency contraception and coughs and colds, is also available from pharmacies, many of which are open over the weekend. A full list of pharmacies open can be found on the CCG website.
If it is urgent but not an emergency, you can access NHS 111 online. Available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, the freephone number is manned by trained advisors who can offer advice or arrange for you to see a doctor or nurse if appropriate.
The NHS Walk-In Centre at Rouen House on Rouen Road, Norwich, is open between 7am and 9pm every day. The Nurse-led centre can help with a range of minor illness and injuries, including minor cuts and wounds, strains and sprains, skin complaints etc. You will be triaged at the front door and signposted elsewhere or treated accordingly.
The Minor Injuries Unit based at Mill Road in Cromer is also open seven days a week, from 8am to 7.45pm. Patients can receive treatment for minor injuries such as minor wounds, burns or simple fractures. The unit are able to advise over the phone if your injury is suitable for the MIU, please can 01603 646230.
Dr Anoop Dhesi, chairman of NHS Norfolk and Waveney CCG said: “The coronavirus is presenting an unprecedented challenge to the health service, but local NHS services will remain available if you need them over the Easter weekend. We do, however, urge people to use their common sense at this time, particularly if they or a member of their household has experienced coronavirus symptoms recently. Most GP practices currently require you contact them by telephone or online initially, and they need to limit face to face contact to those patients for whom it is absolutely essential. We must not forget about regular medication too and ask that you request and collect any repeat prescriptions ahead of the weekend.”
For a list of pharmacies in Norfolk and Waveney which will be open over the Easter weekend please visit www.norfolkandwaveneyccg.nhs.uk .
The NHS says it is important to stress that if you, or any member of your household displays any coronavirus symptoms please do not visit any of the above facilities.
Most people with coronavirus do not need to see a doctor. They should follow NHS advice to self-isolate and treat symptoms with rest and sleep, drinking plenty of water and taking paracetamol to lower your temperature.
Do not leave your home if you have a high temperature or a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours – and use the 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do or if symptoms worsen.