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Advice for our patients during the Junior Doctors’ strike

Junior doctors at the Queen’s Medical Centre, Nottingham City Hospital and King’s Mill Hospital are due to take full industrial action between the hours of 8am and 5pm on Tuesday April 26 and Wednesday April 27, 2016. This is the first time in the NHS’s history that junior doctors will refuse to provide emergency cover. Consultants and other medical staff within the hospital/s will still be working during the strike.

We are working with local health and social care providers to ensure there are contingency plans in place during this time that protect the safety, welfare and service provided to patients. The priority is to ensure that patients who come into our hospitals as an emergency or for urgent treatment are seen and treated as quickly as possible

We are urging you to help reduce pressure on local NHS services ahead of the two-day Junior doctors’ strike.

There are simple things that you can do to help. For example, it is important to think carefully about whether you can treat minor illness at home, with help from your local pharmacist or GP, or by getting advice from NHS 111.

As many as one in four people who go to A&E could care for themselves or use alternative treatment. A&E should only be used for critical or life-threatening situations requiring medical attention, such as loss of consciousness, heavy blood loss, suspected broken bones, persistent chest pain, difficulty breathing, overdoses or poisoning.

People with minor injuries and ailments should not attend at the A&E department and are warned they will face longer waits than normal as more serious cases are prioritised.

NHS 111 provides advice 24 hours, seven days a week for people who have a condition that cannot wait for their GP or if they are unsure what to do.

There are also a wide range of additional services available through their local pharmacists who do much more than dispensing prescriptions.

They offer free expert advice on a wide range of health issues, support for self-care and medicines to treat common complaints such as coughs and colds, flu, sore throats, earache, backache, stomach upsets and cuts and grazes.

Pharmacists are highly qualified healthcare professionals therefore they have expert knowledge on prescription and over the counter medicines. Many pharmacies are open seven days a week and late into the evening. You can locate your nearest pharmacy by visiting NHS Choices .

For vulnerable groups – such as the elderly, children and people with long-term conditions – steps should be taken to ensure they, or those caring for them, know what to do if they need medical care. If they have regular medication – please make sure they collect any prescriptions from the GP and have been to the pharmacist to collect it, and have it to hand.

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