NHS in Sussex Where to get health help in the hot weather

June 15, 2023

The NHS in Sussex is asking people to take care in the hot weather, and reminding everyone where they can get the right treatment for heat related health problems.

Health services across Sussex are reporting high levels of demand this week with an increased number of people seeking medical help because of the heat.

NHS teams have seen higher levels of people with respiratory concerns, and people affected by the high levels of pollen.

High temperatures can affect but the most vulnerable people are:

  • older people – especially those over 75 and female
  • those who live on their own or in a care home
  • people who have a serious or long-term illness including heart or lung conditions, diabeteskidney diseaseParkinson’s disease or some mental health conditions
  • people who are on multiple medicines that may make them more likely to be badly affected by hot weather
  • those who may find it hard to keep cool – babies and the very young, the bed bound, those with drug or alcohol addictions or with Alzheimer’s disease
  • people who spend a lot of time outside or in hot places – those who live in a top-floor flat, the homeless or those whose jobs are outside

With the current high demand for services and with industrial action by junior doctors until 0700am Saturday, health and care leaders are calling for people to know where to go for help and to use the most appropriate services over the coming days.

Pharmacists are trained and available on a walk-in basis to give advice on the best ways to treat symptoms, and help people choose the most appropriate treatment. They can provide effective over-the-counter medicines right there and then.

In particular, they can advise around hay fever and the most appropriate treatment for the conditions people may be experiencing.

If you need more urgent medical support that is not a life-threatening illness or injury, people are being urged to use NHS111 by dialling 111 or going online to www.111.nhs.uk.

NHS111 is available 24 hours a day and can provide help and support online or over the phone, including connecting callers to pharmacists and out of hours GPs, as well as helping those in need get to the most appropriate service if they do need to see someone face to face.

The NHS website also provides health advice and guidance for numerous conditions, including heat-related ailments, such as hay fever and mild sun burn. Last week, more than 120,000 people visited the NHS website seeking hay-fever advice.

If you do need to be seen face to face, NHS111 can advise the best way to get this help and where to go.

With the temperatures and pollen levels rising, more people are visiting Minor Injuries Units and Urgent Treatment Centres this week, so if you walk-in to one of these services, you may wait a little longer than usual.

It is important that A&Es and Emergency Departments are saved for life saving emergencies, especially this week with the industrial action from Thursday. Their expert teams are prepared to be available for those who most need it.

For more information visit the NHS Sussex website here: https://www.sussex.ics.nhs.uk/where-to-get-health-help-in-the-hot-weather/

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