Clinical commissioning groups across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland have put new schemes in place to provide more appointments for those who need them across the winter period.
They are also reminding people to make sure they know how they can access healthcare over the festive period, particularly when GP surgeries are closed.
Melton patients needing to see a healthcare professional when their local GP is closed are advised to visit their local urgent care centre at Melton Hospital outside of normal GP hours.
Additional slots are being offered up until January 31 for people who need care when their GPs are not available. Over the Christmas break patients will be able to use this service to be treated quickly and locally if they’re unwell but cannot wait until their GP practice re-opens.
Patients who become unwell, but are unsure of what is open or the best way for them to get the help they need, are urged to call NHS 111, who will triage their symptoms and advise on the best way to access the most suitable healthcare.
In East Leicestershire and Rutland, the newly launched app ‘NHS Now’ is also available to download through
the Google Play or iTunes store. This app puts information and access to whole range of local NHS services direct into patients’ hands. The app knows when and where the user is when they access it and tailors its information accordingly. This includes opening times, phone numbers and websites - plus walking or driving directions launched directly into the user’s phone.
Melton patients are urged to check their local GP’s website to find out the opening times for their practice over Christmas.
Patients can still access healthcare via out of hours arrangements while surgeries are closed as well as through urgent care and walk in centres.
l The urgent care centre at Melton Hospital is open from 5pm to 9pm on weekdays and 9am to 7pm on weekends and bank holidays.