With common winter illnesses on the rise among young people, teams within local health organisations are encouraging parents to familiarise themselves with the local healthcare options available… before they need them.
It’s also not too late to protect yourself and younger children this winter by taking up the flu and COVID-19 vaccinations for those eligible. Contact your GP practice for information or book online at www.nhs.uk.
Knowing where best to go when your child is unwell helps ensure you get help quicker and keeps services available to those who need them most.
Many coughs and colds can be treated effectively at home, without the need to seek medical advice. Anyone with concerns about winter illnesses are encouraged to speak to their local pharmacist, who can provide expert advice on a range of minor ailments such as coughs, colds and tummy troubles.
• Parents can also access advice and information on a range of illnesses via the HANDI App. Free to download, the app provides expert information on how best to manage the six most common childhood illnesses: diarrhoea, vomiting, high temperatures, chestiness, newborn problems, and stomach pain.
• Where children have sustained minor injuries, such as cuts, grazes, sprains and strains, parents are encouraged to use local minor injury units located in Bromsgrove, Evesham, Malvern, Tenbury and Kidderminster. Manned by Emergency Nurse Practitioners, the units offer advice and treatment for a range of minor injuries for children aged one and over – www.hacw.nhs.uk/MIU.
• Parents who are unsure where best to access help and treatment are encouraged to contact NHS111 by calling 111, or if their child is over the age of 5 using the online service via NHS 111 Online.
• You should call 999 or go to A&E if your child is having difficulty breathing; making grunting noises or their tummy sucking under their ribs; your child’s skin, tongue or lips are blue; or your child is floppy and will not wake up or stay awake.