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A quick reminder about NHS services over the August bank holiday weekend

Herts Valleys CCG is reminding residents of some things they can do to prepare for the bank holiday weekend and what to do if they feel ill when their GP surgery is closed.

Now is the time to check if you are running low on your medication and to order repeat prescriptions if necessary. If you have registered for Patient Online you can order repeats via your smartphone, tablet or PC at any time. If not then get your requests into your practice – allow around a week for your surgery to process your request to be on the safe side.

Your GP surgery will close on Friday 24 August and will not reopen until 8am Tuesday 28 August. Limited pre-bookable appointments are available for you to see a GP over the bank holiday weekend. Groups of GPs working together mean some appointments will be available outside normal hours, via the ‘extended access’ scheme. This means you may be offered an appointment other than at your own GP practice or your own GP; however, with patient consent, full access to patient records will be available. To find out about booking an appointment, speak to your practice receptionist or member of the practice team.

111 is the NHS non-emergency number and the number to call if you need health help and advice over the bank holiday weekend and you aren’t sure which services are open or what is the best one for your condition.

In Hertfordshire, it’s also the number to use if you need urgent GP services when your surgery is closed. It’s fast, easy and free. Call 111 and speak to a highly trained adviser, supported by healthcare professionals. They will ask you a series of questions to assess your symptoms and immediately direct you to the best medical care for you. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

111 is also the number to call if you need health help and advice over the bank holiday weekend and you aren’t sure which services are open or what is the best one for your condition.

It’s really important to use the right NHS service for your specific symptoms or condition and NHS 111 will help you with this.

For more general health advice and information online, www.nhs.uk is an excellent place to start and also includes details of services local to where you are together with their opening hours.

Your local pharmacist is an expert in medicines and minor illnesses and a great source of trusted advice on a range of health issues. As well as helping you to get the right over the counter medicine to relieve your symptoms, they will also tell you if something needs attention from your practice nurse, GP, dentist, your local minor injuries unit or urgent care centre.

Details of pharmacy opening hours over the bank holiday are available on the NHS England website under ‘Hertfordshire Valley’.

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