Accessing NHS services over the May bank holidays

The NHS is here to help you over the May bank holidays – so make sure you know your services to get the care you need.

Anybody who needs medical advice or to visit a pharmacy over the May bank holidays should plan ahead to allow for reduced GP and pharmacy provision over this period.

GP practices will generally be closed on the bank holidays, so will not be making appointments for in-person or telephone consultations on those days. Anyone who needs non-urgent advice should contact NHS 111.

Many pharmacies will also be closed, but some will operate on a rota system to provide cover. A full list of pharmacy opening times is available on the NHS England website.

GP hours over the bank holidays
GP practice services will largely be closed on Monday 3 May and Monday 31 May. If you need medical advice, please contact NHS 111 through either their online service or by calling 111.

NHS 111 will be able to assess you and, if you should need it, book you a time slot at an accident and emergency department to make sure you can be seen safely. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

If you are in a life-threatening situation
Please remember that if you have a medical emergency, such as a suspected heart attack, stroke, or other serious life-threatening condition, to call 999. 

Community pharmacy services over the bank holidays
Some community pharmacies will be open on Monday 3 May and Monday 31 May. Please check the NHS England website for pharmacy opening times and other useful information about accessing NHS services over the bank holiday period. Alternatively you may wish to visit your pharmacy website or call them for more information. Community pharmacy opening hours on the weekends preceding the bank holiday Mondays will be the same as for any normal weekend.

Please order any repeat prescriptions you require in time to ensure you have adequate provision over the bank holidays.You can find out about all the ways you can order your repeat prescriptions here. Please do not go to your GP practice or pharmacy to order prescriptions and only phone them if you cannot order online or by an app. If you need help collecting your prescription, NHS Volunteer Responders may be able to help.

What to do if you are experiencing side effects following a COVID-19 vaccination
A sore arm is the most common side effect of COVID-19 vaccines, but one in four people have symptoms such as fatigue, fever and headache. These symptoms normally last less than a week. If your symptoms seem to get worse or if you are concerned, contact NHS 111through either their online service or by calling 111. For more information on what to expect following your vaccination, you can read the official NHS advice, here. You may also find this leaflet useful. 

If you experience coronavirus symptoms contact the 111 coronavirus service
If you are experiencing coronavirus symptoms, it is important that you do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.NHS 111 has an online coronavirus service that can tell people if they need medical help. Advice on what to do is available at 

Thank you to everyone across Derby and Derbyshire for your support at this time and, as always, please stay safe.