‘Order prescriptions before the Christmas period’ urge Health professionals

‘Order prescriptions before the Christmas period’ urge Health professionals

Christmas is a very busy time for most people, from parties to presents, so everyday tasks can easily be forgotten about, including ordering essential repeat prescriptions in plenty of time before GP surgeries and pharmacists close over the Christmas holidays.

GP Dr Brendan Colgan – who appears in the new Public Health Agency (PHA) and Health and Social Care Board (HSCB) campaign ‘Stay Well This Winter’ – is encouraging people who are on repeat prescriptions to think ahead and order these before the Christmas holidays start to avoid running out when GP surgeries are shut.

“It’s particularly important for people who take regular medication to check their supplies and ensure they have enough to see them through the holidays. This will help prevent any last minute panic during what should be a happy time with their loved ones and prevent any health conditions from deteriorating due to medication running out.

“So for you and your family’s peace of mind, plan ahead and make sure you arrange a suitable time during the week for you to order your prescription from your GP and collect it from your pharmacy. If you know of any neighbours or family members who may not be able to easily get to a GP or pharmacy, check in with them and ask if they need any assistance with getting medicines and remind them of closing times,” he said.

The Health and Social Care Board has also been working with NI Direct to expand public facing online services and make them more readily available to everyone. Booking a GP appointment and ordering repeat prescriptions online are now available from 200 of 344 GP Practices across Northern Ireland.

Dr Margaret O’Brien, Head of General Medical Services, Health and Social Care Board, recommends speaking to your GP about any health concerns before Christmas that may affect your repeat prescription request.

 “If you are worried about what repeat medications you may need to request over the Christmas holidays, speak to your GP practice or local pharmacist before reordering a prescription.”

Don’t get caught out this Christmas, check your medication supplies, order only what you need ahead of time, and collect your prescription well in advance of Christmas.

For further information on how to help yourself stay well this winter visit:  www.nidirect.gov.uk/stay-well 

Notes to the editor

The Public Health Agency (PHA) and Health and Social Care Board (HSCB) are working together this winter to ensure that people prepare for the colder period. Their joint campaign, ‘Stay Well This Winter’, continues urging people to look after themselves and take actions that will help them stay well during winter.