Croydon councillors have taken on the mantle of Winter Champion to support residents to take care of themselves during the cold months – and ease pressures on key NHS services like hospital Accident and Emergency (A&E) departments.
Winter Champions will help the NHS by sharing health advice and urging residents to get the right support for their health needs.
Councillor Jane Avis, cabinet member for families, health and social care, Councillor Alisa Flemming, cabinet member for children, young people and learning, and Councillor Louisa Woodley, chair of the borough’s Health and Wellbeing Board, will be encouraging residents to help the NHS deliver the best possible care to everyone by making the most of services outside A&E.
This can include:
- Getting a flu vaccination. This is particularly important for young children, pregnant women, people over 65 years old and those with a long term health condition.
- Visiting a pharmacist as a good first port of call for advice, as they are experts in many aspects of healthcare. No appointment is required and many have private consultation areas.
- Make use of GP appointments which are available throughout the week.
- Calling NHS 111 for immediate healthcare needs when appropriate.
Residents are also advised to stay warm and well during the winter, and helping others to do so, by:
- Keeping their homes warm at a temperature of at least 18°C (65°F).
- Treating colds and sore throats quickly, wrapping up in warm comfortable clothing and wearing shoes with a good grip, especially if it is icy or wet outside.
- Looking out for frail, elderly or vulnerable family, neighbours or friends as they are more susceptible to ill-health in the cold. Ensure they are warm, have stocked up on their medication and have enough food in their cupboards.
More winter wellness advice is available at www.nhs.uk/staywell
“We are delighted to be NHS Winter Champions for Croydon and support residents to keep well and take control over their own health. The winter months can be challenging for the borough’s health and social care services, with hospitals and A&E departments getting very busy. Visiting your GP, pharmacist or other community service can make all the difference to ensuring that hospitals have the capacity to treat more of those with serious conditions or injuries.”
Councillor Jane Avis, cabinet member for families, health and social care