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 STOKE-ON-TRENT, NEWCASTLE-UNDER-LYME, STAFFORDSHIRE MOORLANDS, SOUTH CHESHIRE

Ensuring well-being in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent this winter:

A guide for a healthy holiday season


The festive season is here, and while we all hope to have a good time, it’s useful to have a health and well-being checklist to make sure you stay well over Christmas and the New Year.

We’ve created a simple guide with essential tips on staying healthy, how to keep your vaccinations up-to-date and important healthcare services:

  1. Staying well:

Stay active: Despite the cold weather, engaging in regular physical activity can help to boost your immune system and maintain overall well-being. Taking a 30-minute walk each day can make a big difference to your health.

Healthy eating: Maintaining a balanced diet rich in vitamins and nutrients can help to support your body during the colder months.

Hygiene practices: Wash your hands regularly to reduce the spread of bacterial infections and always practise good hygiene.

  1. Vaccinations:

Ensure you are up-to-date with both your flu and COVID-19 vaccinations. They’re the best way to protect yourself and the people you come into close contact with.

There are multiple walk-in vaccination sites across the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent region, which can be easily found. Alternatively, you can book an appointment with your GP or at your local pharmacy.

There is also an option to contact your local healthcare service by phone or online by visiting the NHS vaccination booking website. 

Who is eligible?

If you are in any of these categories, then you are eligible for a COVID-19 and flu vaccination. You:

  • are aged 65 or over (including if you will be 65 by 31 March 2024)

  • have certain long-term health conditions

  • are pregnant

  • live in a care home

  • are the main carer for an older or disabled person, or receive a carer's allowance

  • live with someone who has a weakened immune system

  • are a child aged between 6 months and 4 years with a weakened immune system.

  1. Prescription management:

Check your medication to make sure you have enough for the holiday period. Place your repeat prescription orders well in advance to avoid any disruptions.

Pharmacy opening hours: Some pharmacies may be operating on reduced hours this bank holiday period. Visit the NHS England website which has a comprehensive list of all the open pharmacies and their timings.

  1. Mental Health

You are not alone this winter. If you are concerned about your mental health, or someone you care for, you can contact your local free urgent NHS Mental Health Helpline. You can talk to someone to receive telephone support, advice or triage.

This service is here for you, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for everyone.

If you live in North Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, call 0800 0328 728 and press option 1.

If you have a hearing impairment or are unable to use the telephone, you can text the All Age Access Team on 07739 775202 and the team will respond as soon as possible.

If you live anywhere else in Staffordshire, call 0808 196 3002.

If you have a hearing impairment or are unable to use the telephone, you can email the All Age Access Team mhsi.staffordshire@mpft.nhs.uk and the team will respond as soon as possible.

  1. Urgent and Emergency healthcare services:

NHS 111: If you require urgent medical advice but it's not a life-threatening situation, call NHS 111. Trained professionals will guide you on the appropriate course of action.

Emergency services: In case of a life-threatening emergency, dial 999 for immediate assistance.

Dr Lorna Clarson, Deputy Chief Medical Officer for the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Integrated Care Board, said:

“There are a wide variety of healthcare services that can support you and your family this bank holiday season.

“But please make sure you have enough of your normal medicines to last you over the holiday period.

“You can also stock-up from your local pharmacy with over-the-counter medicines like painkillers and indigestion tablets just in case you do over-indulge a little. Your pharmacy can also help with medicines such as decongestants to help you deal with minor winter illnesses.”

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