Stay well over the holiday

How to get medical help and advice over the bank holiday weekend.

With the last weekend of August signalling another bank holiday, it is important that people in Birmingham and Solihull know their options for getting medical help and advice, especially while the weather is hot.

Some GP surgeries will be closed on Monday 26th August, but there are plenty of alternative services available.

Dr Richard Mendelsohn, Chief Medical Officer at NHS Birmingham and Solihull CCG, said: “There are lots of options for patients over the bank holiday weekend to ensure they receive the right help when they need it.

“A well-stocked medicine cabinet means that many common health issues such as colds, bites, stings and headaches can be treated at home. You can also visit your local pharmacist, who can offer medical advice without an appointment.

“Some GP practices will be offering a limited number of extended access appointments on 26 August, but these must be booked in advance by calling your practice as normal.

“If you are not sure where to go, then you can always call NHS 111 or visit online 24 hours a day, seven days a week, or alternatively walk-in or urgent care centres will be open.”

If you’re spending the bank holiday weekend enjoying the sunshine, be sure to wear sunscreen which is factor 30 or more, drink plenty of water and spend time in the shade during 11am-3pm.

Options over the bank holiday weekend:

Self-care – make sure you have a well-stocked medicine cabinet at home, so you can deal with minor injuries and ailments.

Pharmacy – your local pharmacist can give you quick, confidential advice on lots of common illnesses, as well as over-the-counter medication. Find out if your local pharmacy is open on the August bank holidays here.

GP practice extended access appointments – some practices will be offering limited appointments, but these must be booked in advance through your GP practice. Find out the details of the hubs here.

NHS 111 – if you’re worried about an urgent medical concern, or not sure which NHS service you need, you can either call 111 or visit online 24 hours a day, seven days a week

Walk-in centre or urgent care centre – if you have an illness or injury that cannot wait until your GP surgery is open, you can find out the opening hours of these centres on the August bank holidays here.