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Get the care you need

If you are feeling unwell there's a range of NHS services available to help. 

There's a range of NHS services on your doorstep so the next time you or a member of your family is feeling unwell, and you are not sure what to do, choose from the options below to help you decide.

1. Self-care

A well-stocked medicine cabinet will help you with many common health problems, such as colds and flu, coughs, sore throats, indigestion, toothache, headaches and constipation. If you have children, don't forget to include medicines for them too. And always consult a doctor if the problem persists or worsens.

2. Ask your pharmacist

For free expert advice on everyday illnesses, cuts and bumps, medicines, healthy eating, obesity and giving up smoking. To find your nearest pharmacy or for opening hours visit www.nhs.uk.

3. Contact NHS 111

For confidential healthcare advice and information round the clock. Call 111 (free from any phone) to speak to an advisor at the NHS 111 service or go online at www.nhs.uk.

4. Contact your GP surgery

For general medical advice and treatment, prescriptions, referral to a specialist or hospital, if needed, and jabs and tests. For urgent medical help when the surgery is closed, phone the surgery as normal and you will be directed to the out of hours service.

5. NHS walk-in centres

There are two walk-in centres in Bedfordshire, where you can see an experienced nurse or doctor without an appointment for minor injuries and illnesses:

  • Putnoe Walk-in Centre in Queens Drive, Bedford is open from 8am to 6.30pm seven days a week. Telephone: 01234 319992
  • Luton Walk-in Centre in Chapel Street, Luton is open from 8.00am to 8.00pm seven days a week. Telephone: 01582 556400

6. Urgent care

When it’s not an emergency, but is too urgent to wait if your GP surgery is closed, phone the surgery for the out of hours number. You may be seen at home or offered an appointment at various centres in Bedfordshire during out of hours.

7. A&E or dialling 999

For severe breathing difficulties, chest pains, loss of blood, suspected broken bones or other medical emergencies, go to an A&E department or call 999 for an emergency ambulance. Remember, A&E and 999 are for emergencies only. Unsure if your condition needs A&E treatment? Call 111.

8. Emergency dental care

Contact your dentist for emergency care arrangements.


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