How to stay well when you're on holiday

School’s out and many families are planning to have a break in one of the UK’s holiday hotspots or to stay with family or friends in another part of the country.

Happily most holidays go to plan, but it’s worth knowing what to do if one of your group falls ill whilst you are away.

Planning ahead is the best way to avoid holiday health hassles, so remember to order any repeat prescriptions you will need before you go. You can do this online if you’re signed up for GP online services. If not, go into your GP practices with two forms of photo ID and they can sign you up there and then.

Local GP Dr Arv Guniyangodage, chair of Basildon and Brentwood CCG, said: “If one of you does develop a minor illness, or have a bump or scrape during the break, it’s quick and easy to get medical advice at the local pharmacy. You can ask to speak to the pharmacist. They have professional training and will be able to recommend over-the-counter medicines for many minor conditions. They can also advise if they think you need to see another healthcare professional. It is usually possible to arrange a consultation with the pharmacist in a separate room if you need privacy.”

To find the nearest pharmacy with a list of opening times just search on

If it’s urgent but not an emergency call NHS 111. Simply dial 111 and trained staff will tell you the best course of action based on your symptoms and services open in the area.

If you do need to see a GP when staying away from home you can contact any GP surgery. You will be able to receive emergency treatment from a GP in another part of the UK for up to 14 days. If your time away from home and treatment is going to last longer than that, you will need to register as a temporary resident. The surgery staff can help you to do this, or you can find the details and registration form at

And finally, to increase your chances of enjoying your holiday rather than rushing around the shops, make sure you pack a first aid kit. Once again has all the information you need about what to include.

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