Help your NHS – use services wisely

Date: 19 January 2018

Bromley doctors are urging members of the public to only use health services if they really need to and to manage minor conditions such as a cough or cold at home. Health services are currently under significant pressure both in hospital and in the community. This also means that some routine GP appointments may have to be temporarily postponed so that urgent and emergency cases can be seen.

Please only use the emergency services if you really need to so that staff can focus their care on the sickest patients.

Norovirus cases have reduced at the Princess Royal University Hospital (PRUH), so the hospital is now re-opened to visitors. However, due to a few isolated Norovirus cases, restrictions are still in place in some small areas. The latest information on visiting times and using services at the hospital is available on the King's website.

If you have diarrhoea and/or vomiting, please stay at home and please do not visit health services unless it is absolutely necessary. Most cases of diarrhoea and vomiting will pass in a few days. Please drink plenty of appropriate fluids to avoid becoming dehydrated. Visit NHS Choices for more advice on treating your symptoms.

In addition to Norovirus, cases of flu continue to rise in the community. If you are experiencing flu symptoms, such as a sore throat, fever and a cough, please don’t visit anyone in the hospital until you are recovered.

How can you help us to reduce the spread of norovirus?

  • Avoid attending A&E if possible, unless the symptoms are severe or you have complicating factors.
  • Don’t prepare food (especially for others) if possible until 48 hours after symptoms have stopped.
  • Don’t visit people in hospital or in care homes until you have been symptom free for at least 48 hours.
  • Stay off work whilst unwell and for 48 hours after symptoms have resolved.
  • Parents should be advised to keep affected children away from school, nursery, playgroup or child-minding services whilst they are unwell, and for 48 hours after the child has recovered.

Self-care for Life!

Self-care is about looking after yourself in a healthy way. It can be anything from brushing your teeth, doing some exercise, managing common conditions (also called minor ailments) like headaches, colds and flu or living with a long-term health problem, such as asthma or diabetes.

Self-care for common conditions

Did you know that one in five GP visits are for common conditions, such as backache, headache or cough?

For most people, these common conditions are not serious health problems – you just want to know how to relieve it and you want a treatment that acts fast. You also want to know how long you're going to suffer or, what you should do if your symptoms change.

The good news is that self-care can help you manage most of these problems. It may mean you don't have to spend time waiting to see your GP and can get on with tackling your symptoms. Self-care for common conditions can also help free up some of your GP's time, making it easier to get an appointment when you have a more serious condition.

Visit the Bromley Clinical Commissioning Group website for information on how self-care helps the NHS, how your pharmacist can advise you, more information on common conditions and what to include in your medicine cabinet.

  • Summary:

    Bromley doctors are urging members of the public to only use health services if they really need to and to manage minor conditions such as a cough or cold at home

NHS Bromley CCG, Global House, 10 Station Approach, Bromley, BR2 7EH

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