Local people are being urged to seek early advice this winter if they are suffering from a minor illness to ensure it doesn’t get worse. It is part of the NHS ‘Feeling Under the Weather’ national winter campaign which OCCG, local hospitals and pharmacies are supporting.
The campaign is targeting everyone but especially those over the age of 60 and their families, friends and carers. For older people a minor illness such as a bad cough or sore throat can worsen quickly and they are being encouraged to seek advice from their local pharmacist before going to see their GP.
Dr Joe McManners, Clinical Chair for OCCG, said: ‘A minor illness can get worse quickly. Early advice really is the best advice and your local pharmacist can give you this for a minor illness, such as a bad cough or sore throat, as a good alternative to seeing your GP.
‘Local pharmacists are highly trained and trusted sources of health advice. You don’t need an appointment to see one and most have a consultation area where you can speak privately. If you are suffering from a ‘common cold’ your first point of call should be to visit www.nhs.uk/asap where you can get advice on how to treat it, including steps you can take to prevent germs from spreading.
‘If you are suffering from something more serious, or are unsure of where you should go to seek medical advice, then contact NHS 111. I would encourage people who are in any of the at-risk groups, who have not yet made an appointment to have a flu jab, to contact your GP to make an appointment to receive the vaccination as soon as possible. Seasonal flu is not the same as getting a cold, it can seriously affect your health and the risks of complication are greater if you have certain medical conditions.’