Sussex GP practices and community pharmacies set to stay open over bank holiday

GP practices and community pharmacies are set to stay open in the South East over the bank holiday weekend, NHS England has said.

The services in the South East of England will remain open so people can continue to access vital NHS services.

A spokesman said: “While the public is being urged to follow government advice to stay home, NHS services will be operating as normal.

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“For those who need to see their GP, local practices will be running as normal on Good Friday (10 April) and Easter Monday (13 April) and usual weekend hours in South East England will run on Saturday and Sunday – practices can be contacted online or by phone.”

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If a face-to-face appointment is necessary and if for any reason their usual GP practice is not open, patients will be directed to another nearby service, he added.

Community pharmacies across the country will be open for at least three hours on Easter Monday and normal opening hours will apply on Saturday and Sunday - people can check their local pharmacy’s website for details, according to the spokesman.

Dr Nikki Kanani, GP and director of primary care for the NHS said: “The NHS is helping people with the biggest healthcare crisis in our history, and while the NHS is still there for people who need it, the public must play their part by following government advice and staying at home.”

“NHS staff across the country are pulling out all the stops to treat and care for patients during the coronavirus outbreak – this won’t stop during the bank holiday weekend.

“GP and pharmacy staff are working incredibly hard to provide advice and medicines to those who need it.”

Sarah Macdonald, Director of Primary Care and Public Health Commissioning for the NHS in the South East added: “We would like to thank the public for their perseverance and continued support to stay at home. Staying at home keeps you well, protects others, supports the NHS and ultimately saves lives.

“GP and pharmacy services are available across the South East over the bank holiday weekend to offer support.”

Repeat prescriptions should be ordered in their usual quantities at the usual time, either online or on the NHS App. Patients should not go to their GP practice or pharmacy to order prescriptions, the spokesman said.

He added: “When collecting prescriptions, social distancing rules will apply and pharmacy staff will be ensuring these measures are followed in order to protect the public and staff.

“Those over the age of 70, or who have a long-term health condition or who are pregnant should arrange for their prescriptions to be collected by a relative or friend and delivered safely to them.

“Alternatively, for those who are vulnerable and are ‘shielding’, their doctor or pharmacist can log a request to have a prescription delivered the NHS Volunteers Responders referrer’s portal.”

More information about ordering medicines can be found online at www.nhs.uk.

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