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NHS Kernow’s website closed on 30 June 2022. Visit the NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Care Board website for information about our health and care services.

Pressure still on across health and care – how you can help

Holidaying families are heading home and children are returning to school but it looks set to be another challenging weekend across health and care services in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.
Dr John Garman, GP and NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group Governing Body member, said: “The pressure continues to be felt across the whole health and care system, from our local GP surgeries to our hospital and minor injuries units.”

Dr Garman said: “While we continue to work hard in our communities, there are lots of ways people can help ease the pressure if they need health advice and care.”

Help us help you


Visit your pharmacy for expert help with things like bites and stings, a cough or a sore throat, sunburn and hay fever, and even urinary infections.

Use the HandiApp

Download the free NHS HandiApp which provides advice about common childhood conditions. Most fevers, and coughs can be treated with Calpol, drinking water, and will improve within a week.

GP services

For things that aren’t urgent, like sick notes, prescription requests, medical records and GP letters, go to your surgery website and use your GP online consultation service.

Make sure you have enough regular medication and don’t leave repeat prescription requests until you have run out. Talk to your pharmacist to arrange an urgent supply of medication if you do run out.

Call your own GP, even if you’re on holiday. Many consultations can be carried out over the phone or video call, saving you a trip to the surgery and keeping face to face appointments free for those who need it most. You will always be asked to come in if a GP or nurse needs to examine you but you may need to wait for an appointment in these busy times.

Mental health services

If you’re concerned about your own or someone else’s mental health call 0800 038 5300, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week or search mental health crisis Cornwall.

Use NHS 111

Go online to NHS 111 if you need medical help, or think you need to visit a minor injury unit.

Do not visit the emergency department unless you have a serious or life-threatening condition such as a stroke, breathing difficulties, or a heart attack.

Only call 999 if you have a genuine, life-threatening emergency such as serious illness or injury, major blood loss, chest pain or loss of consciousness. If you call for an ambulance, do not call back for an arrival time.

Take your relatives home

Help us by taking your relatives home when they are ready for discharge from hospital. Financial support is available in the form of a one-off discharge grant for people who are ready to leave hospital but need a bit of extra care and support to return home. To date 27 grants have been paid to help people to return home.

Grab a jab!

The coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines are safe and effective. They give you the best protection against COVID-19 and are available for everyone aged 16 or over. Call 119 or visit to book your appointment, or visit one of our walk-in centres.

Dr Garman added: “It’s good to see that more people are attending a minor injury unit rather than heading straight for our emergency department. It means our emergency specialists can see the people who really need life-saving care more quickly. However, we need to remind people you still can’t just walk-in to a minor injury unit. Contact NHS 111 if you think you need urgent help. Trained clinicians will make sure you receive any care you need from the most appropriate service and help us all maintain social distancing and stop the spread of the virus.”

Added on 3 September 2021, in News - Choose well

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