THINK!! WHY A&E? A&E is for emergencies and life-threatening illnesses only.SELF-CARE – Hangover, grazed knee, cough, sore throat – minor illnesses, ailments and injuries can be treated with plenty of rest and a well stocked medicine cabinet that includes painkillers; cold and flu remedies; plasters; and a thermometer. PHARMACY – Diarrhoea, runny nose, painful cough, headache – Pharmacists offer a range of health services. As well as dispensing prescriptions and other medicines, your pharmacy can provide free confidential expert advice and treatment for a variety of common illnesses and complaints, without having to book a GP appointment. GP SURGERY – Back pain, stomach ache, ear pain, vomiting – If you have an illness or injury that won’t go away, make an appointment with your GP. They provide a range of services by appointment, and when absolutely essential, can make home visits. If you need to see a GP outside of the surgery’s normal opening hours, telephone the surgery and your call will be forwarded to the GP out-of-hours service. WALK-IN/SAME DAY CENTRES – Itches, strains, cuts, sprains – These centres provide consultations, guidance and treatment for minor injuries and illnesses, as well as emergency contraception and sexual health advice. There are two centres on the Fylde-Coast both operating seven days a week from 8am onwards. NHS111 – Need help fast, not well? unsure?, call now – NHS111 is a free telephone service, available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You should call 111 if you urgently need medical help or information, but your condition is not life-threatening. When you dial 111, you will be directed to the best local services to make sure you get fast and effective treatment. A&E OR RING 999 – Chest pain, choking, blood loss, blacking out – A&E departments treat patients with major, life-threatening illnesses and injuries, so you should only call 999 or visit A&E when your situation is critical. Using a more appropriate service will save you time – and could save lives.