Yorkshire’s favourite weatherman is forecasting a harsher winter than last year so the message from local GPs is to have good health all wrapped up.
Former Met Office weatherman, Todmorden-bred - John Kettley is predicting that winter 2014/15 will see more likelihood of bitterly cold snaps, ice and even snow.
John, who supplies forecasts to the BBC and Radio Five Live, told the NHS team: “This winter will be very different to last year when autumn seemed to continue with wet and windy weather and we never saw snow.
“There are few signs we will have a repeat of last year.
“Instead, we are much more likely to have some very cold snaps, severe frosts and yes – some snow.
“In view of that, I feel it’s very sensible that the message from the NHS is for people to be prepared.”
Advice from NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to patients is to stock up on vital medicines in the event that bad weather makes it difficult to get out and about – and this includes being prepared with repeat prescriptions.
Making sure patients have enough medicines to see them through the winter can not only make a difference to patients’ health but it could also ensure doctors are not called out unnecessarily or that people are not heading to A&E when they don’t need to.
Dr Majid Azeb, GP, the CCG’s Urgent Care Lead said: “If patients are taking regular medicines, making sure they have enough stocks to last by getting organised with their repeat prescriptions is essential.
“This is especially important if we have bad weather which makes it difficult for some of our patients to get out and about.
“Being prepared could prevent them becoming ill or even avert a medical emergency.
Dr Azeb added: “Winter is a time when demand on emergency services increases dramatically so it is also important that patients think: does this illness or injury really need emergency treatment?
“Sometimes self-care is the answer, especially for coughs and colds which cannot be treated with antibiotics anyway.”
Lots of useful health advice, including keeping well over a cold, wet winter, can be found by logging on to the NHS’s website: www.nhsstaywell.org