Be Safe This Weekend!
South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SCAS) are preparing for a potential increase in the number of calls they attend this weekend, to people suffering the effects of heat - dehydration, heat exhaustion, injuries sustained from jumping into water, and burns from the sun and BBQs.
Temperatures in the South are expected to continue to be relatively high over the weekend, therefore it's extremely important to reduce the risk of dehydration and burns particularly in young children and the elderly. You can do this by avoiding long periods of time in the sun especially in the hottest part of the day (11am-3pm), always wear a hat, use a wide-spectrum high sun protection factor (SPF) 15+ sunscreen, by drinking plenty of fluids, and avoiding alcohol and drinks containing caffeine. In very hot weather, close the curtains in rooms that get a lot of sun, and stay inside in the middle of the day, in the coolest rooms in your house.
During high temperatures it is especially important for the elderly to take extra care as the increase in temperature can exacerbate breathing conditions/ difficulties. If you or a friend or relative suffers from breathing difficulties you need to ensure that you take with you your medication for that condition.
It is also tempting when the weather is hot to jump into water to cool off, South Central Ambulance Service are warning against jumping into water from bridges or piers under any circumstances as this can lead to serious injury. Since Sunday across the SCAS area, we have been called to 9 incidents where the patient has been suspected to have been involved in a drowning, this is compared to 3 in the same period last year. So it is vitally important that people heed this advice and only attempt to swim in safe areas where there are the appropriate safety precautions should you get into difficulty.
Finally if you are celebrating the Olympics please do not end up a casualty! Please enjoy the festivities but drink responsibly. Accidents can happen when you are under the influence of alcohol, and although over indulging is not a reason in itself to call for an ambulance, if you or a friend is injured as a result and sustain serious injury or loose consciousness then phone 999 immediately
If you are not suffering from a life threatening emergency but require medical advice or treatment there are several different options available to you. You can contact:
- Your GP or out of hours GP
- Local walk in centre / minor injuries unit
- Talk to your pharmacist
- Call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47(24hrs)
- Visit your local A&E department.
However if you are suffering from a life threatening emergency such as a heart attack, severe loss of blood, difficulty breathing or a serious accident dial 999 immediately.
THINK. Misuse Costs Lives! Watch our video at www.999southcentral.co.uk/
Published 27 July 2012