Cold weather, ice and snow can cause increases in serious heath problems – and make it more difficult for us to reach you. Stay safe by following our advice.
Wintry conditions put us under pressure because snow and ice mean more people dial 999 after slipping or falling over, and the cold can make existing conditions – like asthma – worse. Cold weather can also lead to serious health problems such as heart attacks, strokes, pneumonia and depression.
It also gets harder for our crews to reach patients. And it means some people are unable to get to GP surgeries or their local pharmacist.
To make sure you stay safe when it’s cold and icy outside:
- Dress appropriately and wear sensible footwear
- Wrap up warm to help keep the cold at bay
- Stock up on medicine, especially if you have a pre-existing condition such as asthma
- Check on your neighbours, especially older people to make sure they have everything they need.
You should always think carefully before dialling 999 and consider other healthcare options. If you have a minor illness or injury, think about:
- Using your local pharmacist or NHS walk-in centre
- Calling NHS 111
- Make your own way to hospital – going in an ambulance does not mean you will get seen any quicker.