‘Stay away from A&E unless you have a serious or life-threatening condition’

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People are being urged to stay away from A&E at East Surrey Hospital this Easter unless they have a ‘serious or life-threatening’ condition.

Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust says people should ‘think twice’ before going to A&E and attend Horsham’s minor injuries unit or Crawley’s urgent care centre instead.

Dr Ben Mearns, chief of medicine the trust, which runs East Surrey Hospital, said: “If you become ill over the Easter holiday there are many NHS services that can help you get better depending on your condition.

“For less serious, urgent conditions including sprains, fractures, stings and bites, your nearest Minor Injuries Unit or Urgent Care Centre can care for you.

“If you do not have an urgent condition, consider making an appointment with your GP. If the GP practice is closed, call 111 – the free NHS phone service, which is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to get advice on the most appropriate care.

“For conditions such as coughs, colds or upset stomach and other common illnesses, local pharmacists are qualified to offer advice and dispense medicines.”