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Plan ahead for Easter healthcare needs

This news article was published more than a year ago. Some of the information may no longer be accurate.

Published: 18/03/2015

Local NHS leaders are urging residents to plan ahead for their routine healthcare needs over the Easter bank holiday weekend (3 to 6 April).

Some GP practices and pharmacies will be closed over the long weekend and people are being reminded to book routine appointments and collect repeat prescriptions while services are open.

Over-60s are also being encouraged to seek early help and advice for minor illnesses to prevent conditions worsening.

Local GP and Chairman of NHS South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Dr Jonathan Hayes said: “Easter is traditionally a busy time for the NHS and this year is unlikely to be an exception so it’s important we do all we can to reduce pressure on local emergency services.

“Unfortunately it’s often the case that people need urgent help over the bank holiday because they’ve run out of routine medication or didn’t seek help for a minor illness in good time.

“So our message is to plan ahead by speaking to your GP and pharmacist now to make sure you enjoy a healthy, trouble-free weekend.”

As part of the campaign, older people in particular are being encouraged to seek early help and advice for minor ailments such as sore throats, coughs and colds that could become more serious if left untreated.

Avon Local Pharmaceutical Committee Chief Officer Richard Brown said: “When you’re a bit older, minor ailments like a cold or sore throat can become more serious and could lead to you being admitted to hospital for treatment.

“If you’re starting to feel under the weather, seek early advice to help you avoid becoming seriously ill. Your local pharmacist can provide expert, confidential advice to help you prevent minor conditions from getting worse.

He added: “Most pharmacists offer a private consultation area and better still you don’t need an appointment.”

Some pharmacies will remain open over the Easter weekend for emergency prescriptions and healthcare advice. For full details of local GP and pharmacy opening times, visit

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