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Where to go for help

Making the right choice about where to go for advice or treatment is important. For patients it often means finding help much more locally than having to travel to a major hospital. For the NHS, it means no one part of the system, such as A&E, gets overloaded. For patients with a critical illness or life threatening injuries who really need to go to A&E, this could mean the difference between life and death.

If you’re feeling unwell, many common winter illnesses can be treated at home with a well-stocked medicine cabinet, plenty of rest and regular fluids. Keeping some general medicines such as Paracetamol, Ibuprofen and cold and flu remedies will usually provide quick relief if you feel unwell. You can always ask your pharmacist for advice.

If you’re not sure where to seek advice, NHS 111 offer health advice and information round the clock, just dial 111 . You can also check your symptoms, read about hundreds of conditions and treatments and find telephone numbers for NHS services at

Pharmacy services

Many common winter illnesses can be treated at home. Ask your pharmacist for advice on the best medicines and treatments for minor ailments. To find your local pharmacy and its opening times – many are open late into the evening - see or call 111.

Pharmacies can give treatment advice about a range of common conditions and minor injuries, such as:

  • aches and pains
  • sore throat
  • coughs
  • colds
  • flu
  • earache
  • cystitis
  • skin rashes
  • teething
  • red eye

If you want to buy an over-the-counter medicine, the pharmacist and their team can help you choose.

Antibiotics will not be available over the counter to treat minor conditions.

New Medicine Service

The New Medicine Service is available at pharmacies to give you extra help and advice if you're just starting on a new medicine for one of the following conditions:

  • asthma
  • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • type 2 diabetes
  • high blood pressure
  • people who have been given a new blood-thinning medicine

Medicines Use Review

You can make an appointment with a pharmacist for a more detailed consultation called a Medicines Use Review. This is especially useful if you regularly take several prescription medicines or have a long-term illness.

Other healthcare professionals may also ask for your permission to refer you to a pharmacy of your choice for a Medicines Use Review, for example when you have been discharged from hospital with a change to your medicines.

You can talk about what you're taking, when you should be taking it, and any side effects you might be concerned about.

Tell your pharmacist if you're taking any over-the-counter medicines or any herbal remedies. They can advise you whether these can be taken at the same time or not.

Disposing of old medicines

If your medicine is out of date, unwanted, or some of it is left over after you have stopped taking it, don't put it in your household bin or flush it down the toilet. Instead, take it to your pharmacy to be disposed of safely.

Other pharmacy services

Other services that may be available at your local pharmacy:

  • you may be referred to a pharmacy for advice after calling NHS 111
  • emergency contraception
  • asthma inhaler use and advice
  • chlamydia screening and treatment
  • stop smoking service
  • blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar testing
  • substance misuse service, including needle and syringe exchange schemes
  • weight management service
  • flu vaccination

Out-of-hours service

Many pharmacies offer extended opening hours in the evenings and at weekends. Some are open until midnight or even later, even on public holidays.

You should consult a dentist for any dental problems. Your GP will be unable to advise you. Click here to search for local NHS dentists.

Minor eye conditions

If you have a recent problem with your eyes, such as sore eyes, red eyes or visual disturbance, you can be assessed and treated by your local Acute Community Eyecare Service (ACES). This is a free NHS service available from a number of local opticians. Click here for more information about this service. 


You can refer yourself for psychological therapy for help with mild to severe mental health conditions. These services are provided free by the NHS if you are aged 18 years or over and registered with a GP surgery in the Guildford and Waverley area. All providers accept referrals for help with the psychological impact of living with long term conditions including diabetes, musculoskeletal conditions, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder and medically unexplained systems.

Click here for further information and a list of providers.

Hip or knee arthritis

A new service in Guildford and Waverley "Living Well with Arthritis" offers support for people with hip or knee arthritis. Click here for more information. If you are interested in this and would like to be referred, please email us at or discuss with your GP or nurse at your next appointment.

GP services

If you have a less urgent illness or injury you should make an appointment with your GP. Knowing what to do when your GP surgery is closed is particularly important. If your GP surgery is closed over a holiday period and you have an urgent medical problem that can’t wait until the surgery reopens, please call the GP “out of hours” service on NHS 111. They will give you a call back and either give you advice or arrange to see you.

Minor Injury Unit

You could use the Minor Injury Unit at Haslemere hospital - you don’t need an appointment:
Minor Injury Unit, Haslemere hospital, Church Lane Haslemere Surrey GU27 2BJ.
Telephone: 01483 782300. Open 09:00 to 17:00, Monday to Friday.

Please note: last patients are seen 30 minutes before the stated closing time.

Walk-In Centre

If you have a minor injury, the nurse led Walk-In Centre at Woking is open Monday – Friday 8am-8pm, Saturday and Sunday 8am-8pm. Their hours may vary over Christmas, so telephone 01483 846209 to confirm. But please note they are not able to treat children under 2. You don’t need an appointment.

Please note: last patients are seen 30 minutes before the stated closing time.

A&E or 999 calls

If you are seriously ill or badly injured you should go straight to A&E or call 999. Please only use these services if you really need them. Using A&E and ambulance services inappropriately may prevent us from reaching critically ill patients who urgently need our help.

Choosing the right service helps ensure you get seen as quickly as possible. Crucially it also means A&E staff can focus on treating patients who are critically ill or have a life-threatening condition.

Call 111 when you need medical help fast but it’s not a 999 emergencyNHS ChoicesThis site is brought to you by My Surgery Website