Residents and visitors urged to support their local health and care services this weekend

29/10/2015 Stock image for corporate communications use by NHS Bath and North East Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group.

Pharmacist Ben Holbrook of the Larkhall Pharmacy in Bath helps promote Ask Your Pharmacist week.

People living in and visiting Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire on holiday this weekend are asked to carefully consider their options for healthcare over the next few days.

With health services still experiencing a sustained level of intense demand, which has been exacerbated by the ongoing number of Covid-19 cases, health leaders are appealing to local people and visitors to make use of pharmacies and be prepared to treat minor conditions themselves rather than relying on local Accident and Emergency departments and doctors’ surgeries.

They are also asking local people to have their Covid-19 jabs if they have not already done so and to not visit people in hospital if they feel unwell.

Pharmacies across BSW are open over the coming weekend and people can drop in for expert advice on many common illnesses such as headaches, sore throats and aches and pains, and there is no need to book an appointment.

Pharmacies can also give help and information on different medicines people can buy over the counter to help manage their illness.

A full list of pharmacy opening times, including weekends, is available at

Many minor conditions and symptoms can also be managed at home without seeking further advice. Visit the NHS website for a complete guide to conditions, symptoms and treatments, including what to do and when to get help.

Gill May, Chief Nurse at Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board said:
“We are lucky enough to live and work in a beautiful area which people from all over the country are keen to visit, especially during the school holidays.

“This weekend is expected to be warm and sunny and, as we expect to see an increase in visitor numbers, we would like to thank those staying with us on holiday, as well as those who work and live in the area, for thinking carefully about how to use local health and care services. By doing so, they will be helping our under-pressure health services during this busy time.

“Our Accident and Emergency departments and GP surgeries are still under intense pressure and we all need to play our part in ensuring the services they provide are available for use only by those who are really ill and need to use them.”