Extra surgery slot for patients over Easter

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Patients with urgent health problems in the Ribble Valley will be able to see a GP over the Easter weekend.

Doctors in Clitheroe and Whalley are collectively opening an extra weekend surgery.

Patients registered with Castle Medical Group, Pendleside Medical Practice and Sabden and Whalley Medical Practice will be able to see a GP on Saturday, April 4th, from 9-30 am until noon at Whalley Medical Centre and on Monday, April 6th, from 9-30 am until noon at Clitheroe Health Centre.

Dr Ian Whyte, clinical lead for the Ribble Valley at NHS East Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group and a GP at Sabden and Whalley Medical Group, said: “We have collectively taken this decision to offer this extra surgery over the Easter weekend so that patients are able to see a GP if necessary and therefore take the pressure off other health services.

“If patients aren’t sure which health service is right for them, they can ring the free NHS 111 number. This is available 24 hours a day including bank holidays. Patients will either be given the appropriate healthcare advice or directed straightaway to the local service that can help best. That could be A&E, an out-of-hours doctor, an urgent care centre or a walk-in centre, an emergency dentist or a late-opening chemist.”

Appointments will be available by ringing 01254 823273 on Saturday, April 4th, and 01200 413535 on Monday, April 6th, from 9 am on the day of the surgery.

l Health officials are also warning residents to use hospital emergency services appropriately and wisely over the Easter bank holiday period. Many people attend urgent services when it is unnecessary and they could be better treated elsewhere. Making an avoidable visit to the emergency department takes hospital teams away from their role, which is to help those with life-threatening situations. This includes conditions such as loss of consciousness; persistent, severe chest pain; breathing difficulties and severe bleeding that cannot be stopped. If someone is seriously ill or injured, and their life is potentially at risk, 999 should be called immediately.