Stay safe this festive period by following Ice Blue Medical’s winter wish list….

With Christmas and the party season fast approaching, Ice Blue Medical is urging people to stay safe by following the advice on its winter wish list. We are asking people to plan ahead for any nights out, look out for others, not drink alcohol to excess, and have fun but be sensible.

While Christmas is always a busy time of the year for the ambulance service, the fact it is immediately preceded by a weekend brings the likelihood of further increased demand.

By following the advice and taking time to prepare properly for the Christmas period, people can reduce the likelihood of having to call on the help of the ambulance service and wider NHS.

Winter wish list:

  • Stock up on your medicine’s cabinet as well as the Christmas chocolates – cold remedies, pain killers, indigestion tablets, diarrhoea or constipation remedies are useful to have in the home all year round.
  • Purchase a small basic first aid kit including plaster.
  • Order any repeat prescriptions you or your friends and family need in plenty of time.
  • If drinking alcohol – have fun but be sensible. Look out for others you’re with and drink water between alcoholic drinks.
  • Excess alcohol consumption on its own isn’t usually a reason to dial 999 for someone but if there’s another complaint causing concern, or someone loses consciousness then dial 999 without delay.
  • Look out for any vulnerable friends and neighbours – what could you do to make their Christmas and New Year that little bit easier?
  • Make sure you don’t serve up undercooked meat and other foods which can cause salmonella poisoning.
  • Take care and use appropriate equipment when hanging Christmas lights and decorations.
  • Wear layers as they keep you warmer than one thicker layer. They can also easily be removed as you warm up.
  • Keep homes at the right temperature – ideally 18-21 degrees.
  • Take extra care if it’s icy or wet. If driving, keep your distance and drive to the conditions of the road.
  • Have you had a flu vaccination? Speak with your GP to book an appointment.
  • Please remember 999 is for emergencies – if it’s not an emergency and you need health advice then you can call NHS 111, make an appointment with your GP, or visit a minor injuries unit or pharmacist.
  • Find out where your local minor injuries unit is.
  • Stock up on winter food supplies and get your boiler serviced.

When to call 999:

If you think a patient is suffering from one of the following you must dial 999 for an ambulance:

  • Heart attack (e.g. chest pain for more than 15 minutes).
  • Sudden unexplained shortness of breath.
  • Heavy bleeding.
  • Unconsciousness (even if the patient has regained consciousness).
  • Traumatic back/spinal/neck pain.

You should also call for an ambulance if: 

  • You think the patient’s illness or injury is life-threatening.
  • You think the illness or injury may become worse, or even life-threatening on the way to the hospital
    moving the patient/s without skilled people could cause further injury.
  • The patient needs the skills or equipment of the ambulance service and its personnel.

For further information on how to protect yourself and others this winter please click on the following link: https://www.nhs.uk/staywell