Make the right choice for health care

Stockport Council is reminding residents of the options for accessing health care to help reduce the pressure on A&E services.

Make the right choice for health care

Often people make A&E as a first port of call and are unaware of other services which can help.

Councillor Tom McGee, Stockport Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Chair of Stockport’s Health and Wellbeing Board said:

“To help reduce the pressure on NHS services we need the public to be aware of the advice and help they can get elsewhere and what they can do to help themselves Often minor aliments can be treated with a well stocked medicine cabinet at home. In other cases when it’s not an emergency people can access excellent advice from the NHS Choices website, their local pharmacy or NHS 111.”

Dr. Colin Wasson, medical director from Stockport NHS Foundation Trust which runs Stepping Hill Hospital said:

“We regularly have people attending our A&E with conditions that could be treated quicker and more efficiently elsewhere. We would therefore ask people to consider whether they can get help from NHS 111, their GP or their local pharmacy before turning up at A&E or calling an ambulance. This will allow the hospital staff to focus their time in dealing with those patients with more serious and life threatening conditions.”

Make the right choice for health care

Self care at home - with a well-stocked medicine cabinet

Sunburn, cuts and grazes, hangover, headache etc
See the NHS Choices web site for advice on a wide range of conditions and symptoms.


Your local pharmacy can give you advice for many common minor illnesses, such as diarrhoea, minor infections, headache, travel advice or sore throats and in many cases can provide you with over the counter medicines that can treat your condition.


Make an appointment with your GP if you're feeling unwell and it's not an emergency or have unusual symptoms which won’t go away.

NHS 111

Call NHS 111 if you urgently need medical help or advice but it's not a life-threatening situation. You can also call NHS 111 if you're not sure which NHS service you need.

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.


Call 999 if someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk

For information about services visit NHS Choices