Health services during Christmas

Remember that health services will be very busy over Christmas and the New Year. Choosing the right care will save you time and reduce pressure on the health services.

Use the Health Help Now app to  find the right service in Kent for your health needs, especially when you need medical help fast but it is not a life-threatening emergency.

Install it or bookmark the web version now so that it is available when you need it.

Self care

Self treat minor injuries and illnesses

NHS Choices advice on colds and flu
and other self treatment

Local Pharmacy

If you are unsure about a minor injury or illness see your local pharmacist.

Local pharmacies can offer a wealth of health support and should be the first port of call for common illnesses such as coughs and colds over the festive period.

Pharmacies can provide much more than just a prescription. They can advise on minor ailments and how to use medications effectively and safely.

Pharmacists are highly trained health professionals, who are qualified to offer health advice and guidance, particularly on common problems such as headache, coughs and colds, tummy bugs, verrucas and worms.

They will advise you on buying over-the-counter medicine and give advice on prescribed medication. Many pharmacies are open for longer hours than GP surgeries, and you don’t need an appointment.

If a pharmacist can’t help you, they will be able to direct you to the right place, whether that is your GP, practice nurse, or a minor injuries unit. Many pharmacies now have consulting rooms where people can discuss their problems with the pharmacist in private.

NHS 111 service

Use the NHS 111 service if you urgently need medical help or advice but it’s not a life-threatening situation.

Call 111 if:

  • you need medical help fast but it’s not a 999 emergency
  • you think you need to go to A&E or need another NHS urgent care service
  • you don’t know who to call or you don’t have a GP to call
  • you need health information or reassurance about what to do next

If a health professional has given you a specific phone number to call when you are concerned about your condition, continue to use that number.

Your GP

Contact your GP for for more serious or persistent illnesses

Minor Injuries Unit

Minor injuries units can treat:

  • sprains and strains
  • broken bones
  • wound infections
  • minor burns and scalds
  • minor head injuries
  • insect and animal bites
  • minor eye injuries
  • injuries to the back, shoulder and chest

A & E

Visit Accident and Emergency for genuine life-threatening emergencies, such as:

Call 999

Call 999 and ask for an ambulance in a medical emergency – when someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk.

Medical emergencies can include:

Call 999 immediately if you or someone else is having a heart attack or stroke. Every second counts with these conditions. Also call 999 if you think someone has had a major trauma. Major trauma is often the result of a serious road traffic accident, a stabbing, a shooting, a fall from height, or a serious head injury.

Health Service hours

Date Pharmacy GP Surgeries Minor Injuries Unit
Asda Musgrove Park
Medical Centre
South Ashford
Medical Practice
Sat 24 Dec 7am – 11pm Closed Closed Closed
Sun 25 Dec Closed Closed Closed Closed
Mon 26 Dec 9am – 6pm Closed Closed Closed
Tue 27 Dec 9am – 6pm Closed Closed Closed
Wed 28 Dec 7am – 11pm 8am – 6.30pm 8.00am – 6.30pm 8.00am – 6.30 pm
Thu 29 Dec 7am – 11pm 8am – 6.30pm 8.00am – 8.00pm* 8.00am – 6.30 pm
Fri 30 Dec 7am – 11pm 8am – 6.30pm 8.00am – 6.30pm 8.00am – 6.30 pm
Sat 31 Dec 7am – 11pm Closed Closed Closed
Sun 1 Jan 10am – 4pm Closed Closed Closed
Mon 2 Jan 10am – 6pm Closed Closed Closed

* Please note that this is a GP service only after 6.30pm for booked appointments only

GP services will continue to be very busy and waiting times will be longer during the first weeks of the new year.

  • The Dementia Helpline is open throughout the festive period, 24 hour a day, on 0800 500 3014.
  • Hopeline (08000 684141) is open from 2pm to 5pm on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day otherwise normal hours are 10am-10pm weekdays, 2pm-10pm weekends.
  • Kent Mental Health Matters (08001 070160) is open all hours and the
  • Samaritans are also open throughout the period on 08457 909090.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *