No need to visit A&E for minor illness or injuries this festive season

The local NHS is preparing for the busiest time of the year but reassuring people there will be a range of healthcare services available this festive season without the need to visit A&E.

Download a full list of opening times here

GPs in Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre are already offering extended opening times as a result of changes earlier this year and these could come in handy over Christmas if you or a loved one does become ill.

Although GP practices will be closed on the Bank Holidays over the festive season, during the run-up to Christmas and in the days before New Year many will be operating longer opening hours. Some will be open and providing appointments from as early as 7am with others staying open until 9pm to offer evening slots.

On the Bank Holidays a range of healthcare services will still be available through the Walk-In and Same Day Health Centres in Blackpool and Fleetwood. Both are able to provide treatment for a wide range of minor injuries and illnesses.

Speaking on behalf of NHS Fylde and Wyre and NHS Blackpool Clinical Commissioning Groups, Dr Amanda Doyle, a Blackpool GP and Chief Clinical Officer at NHS Blackpool CCG, said: “Urgent and emergency services like A&E are likely to be under increased pressure over the Christmas period.

“If you do feel unwell, quite often the best option is to seek advice from your local pharmacy. They can provide advice on a range of minor ailments and you won’t need to book an appointment.

“However, if you do become ill or you’re worried about a long-term condition you might have then there will be GP appointments available as the extra hours will ensure GPs can see those who need them.”

To make an appointment with your GP over the Christmas period, call your surgery as usual or use the GP online appointment booking service available from your practice if you are registered for this.

If you do become ill during the festive period and are unsure of which health service may be best for you then the NHS 111 telephone service is also able to provide advice and information 24 hours, seven days a week.

The call handler will assess your situation and if required, direct you to the best local service to make sure you get fast and effective treatment.

For a full list of opening times of services across the Fylde Coast over the festive period please visit http://whyaande.nhs.uk/xmas .