With only a few days left of the term before the school Easter holiday, NHS 24 are reminding the public to check they have enough of their repeat prescription to last over the bank holiday weekend.
As many GP practices and pharmacies will have amended opening hours over the holiday, those who rely on prescribed medication are being encouraged to be mindful of how much medication they have, and to reorder in plenty of time if required.
The advice forms part of NHS 24’s annual spring health campaign ‘Healthy Know How,’ which supports the appropriate use of NHS services and encourages readiness ahead of the Easter holidays.
Tips included in the Healthy Know How campaign include:
- Check your repeat prescription, order only what you need, in plenty of time
- Keep some medicines to treat common illnesses at home
- If you become unwell, NHS inform has useful symptom checkers to help you decide what to do next
- Be aware that your GP practice and local pharmacy may have amended opening hours over the Easter weekend
NHS 24’s Head of Pharmacy and Associate Clinical Director, Dr John McAnaw, said:
“As the date of Easter changes every year, it can be easy to be caught out and forget that GP practices and pharmacies may have amended opening times over the holiday weekend.
“If you are prescribed repeat medication, please take the time now to check how much medication you already have to ensure you have enough to last you over the Easter weekend.
“If you require additional supplies, be aware that GP practices and pharmacies need time to process requests, so you should get in touch with them now to receive your prescription in time.
“Over the four-day Easter holiday in 2022, NHS 24 experienced a 58% increase in the number of calls to its 111-service when compared to usual call volumes across those days.
“Also, calls regarding medication was the 2nd most common query to the service over Easter weekend 2022.
Dr McAnaw continues:
“It’s a good idea to be prepared for most eventualities over the holidays, so also check you have some over-the-counter remedies such as pain relief, remedies for stomach upsets and antihistamines to cover the most common illnesses and ailments.
“Your local pharmacist will be happy to advise on the most appropriate medicines for you and your family.
“If you do unfortunately run out of essential medication, NHS inform has an Accessing Medicines Guide which has advice on what to do next, or you can visit your nearest open community pharmacy for help and advice with both prescribed and non-prescribed medicines.”
Many GP practices and pharmacies throughout Scotland will be closed for four days from Good Friday, throughout the weekend and Easter Monday.
Dr McAnaw explains further:
“By checking your medication now and following our Healthy Know How advice, we hope many more people in Scotland will have a worry-free Easter weekend and have lots of fun with their loved ones.
“However, if you run out and your local or regular pharmacy is closed, remember you can check where the nearest open pharmacy is to you by checking the service directory on NHS inform or the NHS 24 Online app.”