Choose Well and Stay Well!

If you’re feeling unwell and are unsure about where to get the right help, the information on this page can help you choose the right NHS service or help you take care of yourself. If your health need is urgent, call Single Point of Access on 01472 256256 for advice 24 hours a day, every day of the year.,

Remember, If it's not an emergency, A&E isn’t always the best place to go. You may get faster and more appropriate treatment elsewhere.

So, what are the options?

Self Care

Sometimes the best person to take care of you is yourself or a family member.

You should be prepared for some of the most common ailments by keeping a well-stocked medicine cabinet and first-aid kit at home. A local pharmacist can give you advice on what to have in but essentials include:

  • Pain relief
  • Painkillers such as aspirin, paracetamol and ibuprofen are effective at relieving most minor aches and pains
  • Antihistamines
  • These are useful for allergies and insect bites. They are also helpful if you have hay fever.
  • Fluid replacement drinks
  • Fever, diarrhoea and vomiting make us lose the water and minerals we need and can lead to dehydration. Fluid replacement drinks can help restore your body’s natural balance of minerals and fluid
  • Indigestion treatment
  • If you have stomach ache, heartburn or trapped wind
  • First aid items such as bandages, plasters, antiseptic and dressings.

Pharmacist

Pharmacists can advise on common illnesses such as coughs, colds, aches and pains and the medicines you need to treat them. They can also help you decide whether you need to see a doctor.

You can talk to your pharmacist in confidence and you don’t need an appointment. Most pharmacies now have a quiet consultation area where patients can discuss health problems in privacy.

Services from your local pharmacy include:

• Emergency contraception
• Chlamydia screening and treatment
• Pregnancy testing
• Medicines Reviews
• Stop smoking services
• Weight management
• Truss fittings
• Incontinence supplies
• Needle exchange and supervised drug administration

They can help with minor ailments such as:

• Bugs and viruses
• Minor injuries
• Tummy troubles
• Women’s health (for example menopause or menstruation)
• Skin conditions
• Allergies
• Aches and pains
• Children’s minor illnesses and mishaps

Your GP (family doctor)

If your pharmacist is unable to deal with your condition or it doesn’t get better after a few days, your GP can help. They provide a range of services by appointment, including medical advice, examinations and prescriptions.

If you are not registered with a GP, call the local health advice line on 01472 256256 or visit www.nhs.uk to find one near you.

A GP Out of Hours service is available from 6.30pm to 8.00am on weekdays and all day at weekends and on bank holidays. If you think you need a GP appointment out of hours, please ring Single Point of Access on 01472 256256.

Single Point of Access (SPA)

If it’s not a 999 emergency but you need medical help fast, call the North East Lincolnshire Single Point of Access (SPA) on 01472 256 256. SPA is for people who live in North East Lincolnshire or are registered with a North East Lincolnshire GP.

SPA offers confidential advice and information over the phone 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you are ill and have any questions about your physical or mental health or if you need to see a GP during the evening, night time or weekends then ring 01472 256 256.

You will get through to a team of trained call advisers, who are supported by experienced clinicians. They will ask some questions to assess your symptoms and give you the healthcare advice you need or direct you to the right local service.

If they think you need an ambulance, they will send one immediately – just as if you had originally dialled 999.

You should call 01472 256 256 if:

• You need medical help fast, but it is not a 999 emergency
• You think you need to go to accident and emergency or another NHS urgent care service
• You do not know who to call for medical help or you do not have a GP to call
• You require health information or reassurance about what to do next
• For less urgent health needs, you should still contact your GP in the usual way.

SPA is also for enquiries about adult social care (if you or a relative needs some extra support at home, for example).

You can also use this number in the daytime for general advice and support around your mental wellbeing and during the evening/overnight people can access the Mental Health Crisis Service by calling the same number.

A&E or 999

Emergency services are always busy but this is particularly true during the winter.

You should only attend A&E (sometimes known as “Casualty”) if you are badly hurt, seriously ill or if you have been advised to go there by SPA (or NHS 111), your GP or a Pharmacist.

This includes when someone:

• is unconscious
• has severe chest pain
• has a fever and is persistently lethargic despite having paracetamol or ibuprofen
• has a head injury and vomiting
• has heavy blood loss
• is having difficulty breathing (breathing fast, panting or are very wheezy)
• has severe abdominal pain
• has a cut that won’t stop bleeding or is gaping open
• has a leg or arm injury and can’t use the limb
• has swallowed poison or tablets
• has an object lodged in nose or ear.

There are A&E departments at the Diana, Princess of Wales Hospital, Scartho Road, Grimsby, DN33 2BA and at Scunthorpe General Hospital, Cliff Gardens, Scunthorpe, North East Lincolnshire DN15 7BH.