Local health chiefs are urging Peterborough residents to sort their medicines out early as many GP practices and pharmacies are closed over the Christmas holidays.
NHS Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is encouraging people to check their current medication and take stock to see if they have enough to last them over Christmas and into the New Year.
It can be difficult for patients to get regular medication if they run out over the Christmas period, and this can lead to people having to use A&E just to get a prescription for regular medication.
Peterborough GP Dr Gary Howsam said: “The Christmas and New Year holidays can be really busy with presents to wrap, food to buy and visits to family and friends.
“The last thing on your mind might be checking you have enough of your usual medication to last you over the festive time. But being prepared is important, not only for your health but the last thing you want to be doing is trying to get more medication on Boxing Day because you’ve run out.”
The CCG also wants to remind people what to do if their usual GP practice is closed.
It said: “NHS 111 can always help to direct you the most appropriate service to help; this can include out of hours GP services along with minor illness and injury units. You just need to call 111.
“You might also want to check your local pharmacy’s opening times over Christmas. The pharmacist can provide advice on self-care and you can purchase basic medication for babies and children, medicine for pain relief, coughs and colds help, along with contraception and other medication for minor health problems.”
For minor illnesses and injuries residents can use the Minor Illness and Injury Unit in Thorpe Road which is open every day from 8am to 8pm. It can help with cuts, bites, minor burns and scalds, muscle and joint injuries and emergency contraception.
There are pharmacies open in the city on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. For more information about pharmacy opening times over Christmas visit www.cambridgeshireandpeterboroughccg.nhs.uk/xmaspharmacies.