Northern NSW Local Health District (NNSWLHD) and North Coast Primary Health Network (NCPHN) are joining forces to encourage North Coast residents to have a healthy holiday season with some simple preparations.
“Making sure you have an up-to-date medication list is a great first step, even if you’re not going away over Christmas,” NNSWLHD Chief Executive, Wayne Jones, said.
“Check this with your doctor or pharmacist and remove any medications you are no longer taking.”
You can carry this list with you if you go on holidays, use a smartphone app (e.g. Medicinewise) or save the list in your online My Health Record.
My Health Record is an online record of your important health information. Once you set up your record, you can access it from anywhere in Australia or overseas.
“Your My Health Record is a great way to be able to access vital information about yourself if you become unwell or have to visit an emergency department. When you get home your regular doctor will be able to see a summary of care you’ve had while being away,” Mr Jones said.
Anyone with an ongoing health problem should ask their regular doctor for a Sick Day Action Plan. This can help you recognise early if your symptoms are getting worse and take action.
It could mean that you avoid having to go to the Emergency Department while on your holiday or during the break when your usual doctor’s practice may be closed.
“Many GPs in the region go on holidays too and it can be hard to get an appointment during the holiday period, but planning ahead will help you ensure you have the medications you’ll need,” NCPHN Chief Executive Officer, Dr Vahid Saberi, said.
“Residents and visitors can also use the online symptom checker on the Healthdirect website, www.healthdirect.gov.au/ to help manage illnesses at home and alert them when they need to seek medical attention more urgently,” Dr Saberi said.
“The site can also help you locate a GP or Pharmacy that is open.”
North Coast Primary Health Network has been reminding general practices and pharmacies to update their opening hours on their answering machines and with the National Health Services Directory.
Outside business hours, north coast residents and visitors can access the HealthDirect after-hours helpline to speak to a health professional, on 1800 022 222.
To register on line for a My Health Record visit: https://myhealthrecord.gov.au
For information on how to manage in extreme heat, head to www.health.nsw.gov.au/news/Pages/20171214_00.aspx
For more tips on how to take charge of your health and health records, visit http://healthliteracy.nnswlhd.health.nsw.gov.au/
Image: Lennox Head-Alstonville Surf Lifesaving Club Patrol 1 crew.