Deciding which health service to use when you need urgent or emergency care can be confusing.
Treating yourself at home:
Treating yourself - or self-care - is the best way to treat very minor illnesses, ailments and injuries. This can cover a range of common illnesses such as coughs, colds, sore throats and upset stomachs and is a good way to ensure you can prevent minor illnesses becoming worse.
Your local pharmacy:
Your local Pharmacy can provide confidential, expert advice and treatment for a range of common illnesses without having to wait for a GP appointment or go to your Walk-in Centre / Accident and Emergency Department. Many pharmacies are open longer hours into the evenings and weekends to accommodate you.
Your GP & Out of Hours service:
If you have an illness or injury that will not go away or gets worse, make an appointment with your GP. They provide a range of services and can prescribe medication suitable for your illness. When absolutely necessary, a GP can arrange to visit you at home.
Your local walk-in centre:
Walk-in Centres, Minor Injuries and Urgent Care Centres offer an alternative access for treatment of a range of minor illnesses and injuries. Local opening times may vary.
NHS 111 provides confidential health advice and information by telephone 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Experienced call handlers will assess the condition and advise you where to go for help; make a GP appointment for you or despatch an ambulance in the case of an emergency.
Emergency Department (A&E) or 999
Attending the A & E / Emergency Department or calling 999 for an Ambulance should only be used in a critical or life-threatening situation.