NHS asks East Sussex residents to ‘use services wisely’ this New Year

The NHS is calling on people in East Sussex to use health services wisely to help keep Sussex safe this New Year’s Eve.

As demand for all NHS services across Sussex continues to rise the NHS is urging people to celebrate safely so that emergency services can care for the sickest patients as quickly as possible, a spokesperson for Sussex Health and Care Partnership said.

The spokesperson said, “GP Practices and community services are also extremely busy, with the additional pressure of vaccinating as many people as possible.

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“Across Sussex health and care partners are continuing to work together to provide support where needed so they can care for those who need help. Use health services wisely.”

Keep Sussex safe

David Walker, medical director for East Sussex Healthcare Trust, said, “We completely understand that people want to celebrate with their loved ones after what has been a really tough year but we’re urging them to do so as sensibly and safely as possible.

“With the onset of Omicron our hospitals, and all NHS services, are busier than ever. We need to protect those services for the people that need emergency care this New Year so please try and use the right services for you and only attend our emergency department for exactly that, an emergency.”

How you can help:

• Use your pharmacist – they can do so much more than complete your prescription. Pharmacists can give you expert clinical advice for minor health concerns and help with many common illnesses like sore throats, coughs, colds, tummy troubles and aches and pains. They can advise you on the safe use of prescription and over-the-counter medicines.

• NHS 111 – online or by calling the free NHS 111 number when you need help urgently. Available 24/7, 365 days the 111 service can offer advice and guidance if you have an urgent healthcare need that is not an emergency.

• Urgent Treatment Centres (UTCs), walk-in centres or Minor Injuries Units (MIUs), offer treatment for most injuries or illnesses that are urgent but not life threatening. People are urged to use NHS 111 who can arrange an arrival time at the nearest UTC or MIU service to you.

• If you have a serious or life-threatening emergency call 999 or attend your local A&E department.

• Booking your Covid-19 Booster – the number of appointments available for local people across Sussex are being significantly increased, with sites opening for longer and on additional days and new services are being made available in key areas.