When to dial 999?
Call 999 immediately if you or someone else is having a heart attack or stroke. Every second counts with these conditions. Also call 999 if you think someone has had a major trauma. Major trauma is often the result of a serious road traffic accident, a stabbing, a shooting, a fall from height, or a serious head injury.
Call 999 in a medical emergency – when someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk.
Medical emergencies can include:
- loss of consciousness
- an acute confused state
- fits that are not stopping
- persistent, severe chest pain
- breathing difficulties
- severe bleeding that cannot be stopped
- severe allergic reactions
- severe burns or scalds
Are you having a mental health crisis?
If your mental or emotional state gets worse, or you’re in crisis or despair, it’s important to get help quickly. You’re not alone – talk to someone you trust. You can also contact the Samaritans who are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Head Space offers an out-of-hours service for people who consider that they are approaching a mental health crisis. The service aims to provide a non-clinical setting with a safe, calm and structured environment, where individuals can go to access peer support. Learn more.
If you’re experiencing a crisis and this isn’t something you’ve experienced before, please contact your GP who will be able to refer you to a community mental health team. If your crisis occurs at night or the weekend, you can contact NHS 111, or Devon Doctors who provide out of hours primary care.
If you’re already known to our services, please contact your community mental health team (working hours are 9am-5pm, Monday – Friday). If your crisis occurs at night or the weekend, please contact Mental Health Matters.
If you are at risk of causing yourself harm, please call 999 or visit your local A&E department.
When should I call NHS 111?
If you’re worried about an urgent medical concern, call 111 and speak to a fully trained adviser. For less urgent health needs, contact your GP or local pharmacist.
NHS 111 is much more than a helpline – if you’re worried about an urgent medical concern, you can call 111 to speak to a fully trained adviser.
Depending on the situation, the NHS 111 team can connect you to a nurse, emergency dentist or even a GP, and can arrange face-to-face appointments if they think you need one.
NHS 111 advisers can also assess if you need an ambulance and send one immediately if necessary. Learn more
Minor injuries units
If your injury is not serious, you can get help from a minor injuries unit, rather than going to an A&E department. This will allow A&E staff to concentrate on people with serious, life-threatening conditions and will save you a potentially long wait. Learn more
Minor injuries units can treat …
- sprains and strains
- broken bones
- wound infections
- minor burns and scalds
- minor head injuries
- insect and animal bites
- minor eye injuries
- injuries to the back, shoulder and chest
MIU Cumberland Centre (Plymouth)
PL1 4JZ (Directions)
Tel: (01752) 434390
Opening times: 08:30 – 21:00
Opening days: 7 days per week
X-ray available: 09:00 – 20:45 (7 days)
MIU South Hams Hospital (Kingsbridge)
TQ7 1AT (Directions)
Tel: (01548) 852349
Opening times: 09:00 – 17:00
Opening days: 7 days per week
X-ray available: 09:00 – 17:00 (Mon-Fri)
What to expect from your pharmacy
Pharmacists can help you decide whether you need to see a medical health professional. They can help you consider the alternatives next time you’re thinking of making a doctor’s appointment.
Pharmacists are experts in medicines, and use their clinical expertise, together with their practical knowledge, to advise you on minor health concerns, such as coughs, colds, aches and pains, as well as healthy eating and stopping smoking.
All pharmacies provide the following services:
- repeat dispensing
- disposal of unwanted or out-of-date medicines
- advice on treatment of minor health concerns and healthy living
You can talk to your pharmacist in confidence, even about the most personal symptoms, and you don’t need to make an appointment. It’s possible to walk into any community pharmacy and ask to speak with the pharmacist. Learn more