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Public urged to Help Us Help You as pressures on health and care services continue

Health and care services across Wales and the West Midlands are under extreme pressure. We recognise that this can be a source of anxiety for people seeking urgent care advice and support. Health and care leaders are urging people to do their bit to help support services by choosing the best service for their needs if they are ill or injured during this busy period.

Rising Covid-19 numbers, high demand for services and ongoing challenges with workforce sickness are all contributing to pressure on the system. As a result, the health and care system will need to take additional steps to prioritise emergency care and maintain safe services for patients.

Patients with the highest level of need will be prioritised, this could mean that some non-urgent services are postponed or rescheduled. Please continue to attend your appointment as usual unless you are contacted to rearrange.

Powys residents access their acute hospital services from neighbouring health boards in Wales and neighbouring NHS Trusts in England. All hospitals are appealing to local communities to only come to A&E for life threatening conditions and injuries. We urge you not to call 999 or attend A&E unless it’s an emergency: NHS 111 Wales online can help you find where to get help and support.

Local pharmacists are a great place to start for minor ailments and self care advice. Through the Common Ailments Scheme you can get advice and treatment for a range of common ailments without having to make a GP appointment.

The Health Board’s Minor Injury Units located in Brecon, Llandrindod Wells, Welshpool and Ystradgynlais can help give advice and treatment for a variety of minor injuries such as sprains and strains. Please Phone First if you can so that our expert nurses can provide you with advice over the telephone, book an appointment if needed, or refer you to another service if appropriate. Drop in is available for people who are unable to use the telephone to contact us.

Minor injury services are also available from many GP practices across the county. Check with your local GP practice for details.

If you have a relative or loved one in hospital who is well enough to go home but is waiting to be discharged with homecare and community health support, you may be able to help them get home quicker if you and your family can support them at home.

We are working extremely hard to ensure people are kept safe and would like to reassure the public that despite the challenges faced, our services remain open for anyone who needs them. Please help us to help you and those you love.

Here’s how you can help:

  • Please consider whether you do need to attend an emergency department or call 999. If it’s not a life-threatening emergency there are other places to seek help.
  • Use NHS 111 Wales online if you need advice or medical treatment quickly.
  • Minor Injury Units (MIUs) are here to help with injuries that need attention urgently but are not critical or life threatening. Please Phone First for our MIUs in Brecon, Llandrindod Wells, Welshpool and Ystradgynlais. Your GP practice may also offer a minor injury service.
  • Please pick up friends or relatives from hospital as soon as they are well enough to be discharged and the hospital have contacted you. This frees up a bed for other patients who need it.
  • Use your local pharmacist for minor conditions such as upset stomachs, earache, skin rashes and for relief of coughs and colds. Find a pharmacy near you: Find a pharmacy Make sure you order repeat prescriptions in plenty of time, and also take the opportunity to stock up your first aid kit
  • Get vaccinated against Covid-19 and flu if you are eligible. Vaccination will protect not only yourself but others around you.
  • Stay at home and particularly don’t visit hospitals if you have symptoms of an infectious illness such as Covid-19, flu or norovirus (known as the winter vomiting bug). Remember hands, face, space.
  • Wear a mask in healthcare settings and crowded indoor spaces.
  • For concerns about Strep A, please see the latest guidance at
  • The C.A.L.L mental health helpline for Wales offers emotional support and information. Call 0800 132 737 of text HELP to 81066.

More information about how to Help Us Help You is available from

Check for the latest updates from your nearest A&E: Neighbouring Hospitals

Published 03/01/2023