The NHS in Kirklees has issued a reminder about the support available to help people get the care they need over the holiday period.
With the emergence of the Omicron variant, the NHS says getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself and others.
People aged 18 and over can get a booster jab if it’s been three months since their second dose. Vaccination clinics are available across Kirklees and appointments can be booked for first, second and booster doses via the National Booking System (https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/) or by calling 119.
You can also attend a local walk-in clinic, check the NHS website for locations and opening times (https://www.nhs.uk/service-search/find-a-walk-in-coronavirus-covid-19-vaccination-site).
The NHS is also advising people to get their flu jab. Flu can be serious. It kills around 11,000 people, hospitalises tens of thousands more in England each year, and can cause severe complications, particularly for high-risk groups.
If you are pregnant, have a long-term health condition such as asthma or diabetes, are over the age of 50, or are the main carer for someone, you are eligible for a free flu vaccine. You can find further information on the flu vaccine on the NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/flu-influenza-vaccine/.
Community pharmacists are qualified healthcare professionals who can offer advice on the best treatment for common health conditions such as colds, rashes and tummy aches.
Use the pharmacy finder to locate your nearest pharmacy: https://togetherwe-can.com/find-a-pharmacy/. You’ll find a list of Christmas opening hours on the Community Pharmacy West Yorkshire website: http://www.cpwy.org/news/news.php?action=article&artid=37
Think ahead and check your medicine cabinet so that minor injuries and common health problems can be treated at home. You can find information on what to keep in your first aid kit on the NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/common-health-questions/accidents-first-aid-and-treatments/what-should-i-keep-in-my-first-aid-kit/.
If you have a repeat prescription, please make sure you have enough medication to last over the bank holidays. Remember that you can manage your repeat prescription through the NHS App (nhs.uk/app) or your GP’s online services.
If you are concerned about your or someone else’s mental health you can get help from the 24-hour mental health helpline by calling 0800 183 0558.
This is a free and confidential service and is available to anyone registered with a GP in Kirklees. Children and young people can also use the NightOWLS service by calling 0300 2003900. This service is available from 8pm-8am.
Dr Khalid Naeem, clinical chair of Kirklees CCG and a local GP, said: “The NHS is still here for you and your family this Christmas. Please help us, help you this winter by making the right choice.
“If you have an urgent medical condition but it’s not an emergency, you should contact NHS111 by phone or go online 111.nhs.uk.
“You should call 999 when someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk, such as severe bleeding, head injury or you think it could be a heart attack or stroke.”
For more tips and advice on staying healthy this winter, visit the Together We Can website: https://togetherwe-can.com/winter-protection/.