Borders hospital issues plea to stay out of A&E

Borderers are being urged to stay away from the region’s general hospital except in emergencies.

The Borders General Hospital at Melrose.
The Borders General Hospital at Melrose.

Nicky Berry, director of nursing, midwifery and acute services at the Borders General Hospital at Melrose, made the same appeal last month due to ongoing demand.

She said: “We are currently experiencing exceptionally high demand in our accident and emergency department.

“Please only go to the Emergency Department (ED) if you have an illness or injury that is serious and requires urgent medical attention.

“If you do need to attend the ED you may have to wait longer than usual so please be patient and remember that our staff are doing their best during this very busy time.

“If you are unwell and it is not an emergency there are a wide range of NHS services available to provide you with the appropriate treatment and care. GP surgeries are open and your community pharmacies are open and available to provide expert advice and treatment for a range of common illnesses and ailments, and to give advice about your medicines. Please make sure you have adequate stocks of regular prescription medicines that you take.”

Mr Berry said self-care was the best choice to treat very minor illnesses, ailments and injuries.

The public is invited to visit www.nhsinform.sco for information on how to treat a wide range of minor ailments.

If you or someone you care for is unwell when your GP surgery is closed contact the NHS 24 helpline on 111.

If the condition is immediately life threatening, dial 999 for an emergency ambulance.