PEOPLE are being urged to think ahead and prepare for the closure of their GPs’ surgeries over the festive period.
Many surgeries and pharmacies will close for four days over Christmas, December 24 to 27, and for another four over new year, from December 31 to January 3.
And NHS Scotland is encouraging that patients find out the opening and closing times of their particular surgeries.
The health service is also recommending the re-stocking of medicine cabinets with remedies to treat the most common winter ailments and for patients requiring repeat prescriptions to plan accordingly.
Dr George Crooks, medical director of NHS 24, said: “There will be two four-day closures this year, so it is essential that everyone is prepared and knows exactly when their local services are available and how to access them.
“Families and elderly people, in particular, should know when their local GP and pharmacy is open over the Christmas and New Year period, especially if they are planning to visit family and friends in different places.”
The four key recommended steps are to restock medicine cabinets, make use of local pharmacies, make sure repeat prescriptions are organised and know when GP surgeries will be open.
General advice and information on how to stay healthy over winter can be found at www.nhsinform.co.uk or contact NHS inform on 0800 22 44 88. Winter health advice is also available through the NHSScotland digital TV channel, or by following NHS 24 on Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates and tips.