Out of Hours services in NHS Lanarkshire continue to experience “significant pressures” say health chiefs.
And the health board’s Clinical Director in Primary Care, Dr Iain Hathorn, is asking for the public’s assistance by making sure they access the right services.
These pressures can result in many patients experiencing longer waits to be seen.
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This will be particularly difficult during the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations where there is an extra public holiday – some general practice surgeries will be taking these on Monday, May 30 and Friday, June 3 and others Thursday and Friday, June 2 and 3.
Dr Hathorn is asking people to initially seek information and advice for their ailment either on the NHS Inform website or NHS Lanarkshire’s website where there is a raft of helpful information and self-help advice.
Local pharmacies can also offer healthcare advice and support for a range of minor support and if someone still requires further healthcare support NHS 24 will be able to provide the appropriate direction for further support.
It is also extremely important that people ensure they have the necessary medication they need over the long Jubilee weekend holidays so order any medication in plenty of time.
He added: “We understand that when someone has an illness or minor injury they want help as soon as possible.
“Unless a patient’s condition is life threatening or critical they should seek advice for the appropriate healthcare support by ringing NHS 24 on 111 day or night.
“They will be able to direct people to the right NHS service which will result in people being seen and treated quicker including by the Primary Care Out of Hours Service where appropriate.
“There are a number of options that people can turn to for health care with a range of help and advice on NHS Lanarkshire’s website including Meet the Experts which offers a range of services that local healthcare professionals across Lanarkshire can provide.
“The NHS inform website also provides advice on self-care and NHS 24 can provide urgent health advice.”
Soumen Sengupta, Director of Health and Social Care said: “Lanarkshire’s Primary Care Out of Hours Service is experiencing similarly high levels of demand as other emergency care services. We are asking Lanarkshire residents for their continued assistance during this challenging time.
“All of our teams work extremely hard in often very challenging circumstances, and we very much appreciate the support of the communities we serve.”
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.