Local people are urged to be ready for Easter by planning ahead for repeat prescriptions and using NHS services appropriately.

GP surgeries will be closed during the Easter weekend, including Good Friday and Easter Monday on 19 and 22 April.

By re-stocking their medicine cabinets if needed, knowing when their GP surgery is open and planning ahead for any necessary repeat prescriptions, people can ensure they make the most of the Easter holiday.

Dr Ben Butler-Reid, a Blackpool GP who is clinical director for the Fylde Coast CCGs, said: “The Easter holiday period can be a very busy time for NHS services. Ordering and collecting a repeat prescription in good time not only ensures you keep well but could also help keep staff free to deal with serious or life-threatening emergencies.

“Making sure you have the right medicines could make all the difference. Taking daily medication is an important part of treatment for those with long-term health problems such as asthma and diabetes and they are at risk of suffering serious attacks or hospitalisation if they run out of medicine.”

It is also worth checking your general medicine cabinet prior to the Bank holiday to make sure it is well stocked with essentials such as paracetamol, cough and cold remedies, antihistamines and plasters and bandages. These can all be bought cheaply from supermarkets or pharmacies and your local pharmacist can also provide free, confidential, expert advice and treatment for a variety of common complaints.