How to access health care in Wiltshire this Christmas
With GP surgeries closed for several days over the festive period it’s vital that people who need help from NHS services this Christmas get the advice they need from the right person, in the right place, at the right time.

NHS Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group is asking everyone to follow these three simple steps if they need help:

1. Ask your pharmacist
Pharmacists are experts in many aspects of healthcare and can offer advice on a wide range of long term conditions and common illnesses such as coughs, colds and stomach upsets.

You don’t need an appointment and many have private consultation areas so they are a good first port of call if you’re feeling unwell. Your pharmacist will tell you if you need further medical attention.

2. Call 111
If your GP surgery is closed and you’re not sure where to go then you should make a free phone call to NHS 111, which is available 24/7.

An adviser will ask you questions to assess your symptoms and then give you the advice you need or direct you to the best service for you in your area.

3. A&E and 999 are for life threatening emergencies
A&E departments and the ambulance service are for life threatening emergencies such as loss of consciousness, suspected heart attacks, breathing difficulties or severe bleeding that cannot be stopped. A&E is likely to be extremely busy over the holidays with long waiting times so please call NHS 111 for advice first if you are not sure where to go.

A list of opening times for GP surgeries, pharmacies, dentists and opticians in Wiltshire over the Christmas break can be found here.