Christmas shoppers urged to stock up on meds

By Tristan Harris Monday 23 December 2013 Updated: 23/12 17:10

WEST Midlands Ambulance Service is urging residents to prepare their medicine cabinets for the festive season.

It is hoped, by having a few medical essentials, people will be able to avoid an unnecesary trip to A&E or a making an un-needed 999 call.

Among the items residents are recommended to have in over Christmas are painkillers, cold and flu remedies, indigestion relief, bandages and plasters, a thermometer and a good stock of tissues.

Those who require regular prescription medication should check they have enough to get through the holiday season and, if not, should make sure they have enough time to get a repeat prescription.

Anyone on prescription medicine who is going away for Christmas should also remember to take it with them.

Those who do forget should seek advice from a pharmacist as soon as possible.

General medical advice is also available from the pharmacist as well.

West Midlands Ambulance Service’s medical director, Dr Andy Carson, said with essential medicines to hand the majority of people should be able to treat themselves at home for a pre-existing condition or a minor illness.

“The last thing we want is more cases of people’s celebrations being disturbed or even ruined by a medical emergency which could have been prevented with some simple pre-planning."

He also reminded people that - if they used health services regularly - to check the opening times of their local GP surgery.

"If you do unfortunately find yourself unwell over the festive season please think about the service you need - do you have a life threatening emergency or could you use a walk-in centre or visit a minor injuries unit?"

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