The Minister for Health and Social Services, Lesley Griffiths visited the Eagles Meadow branch of Boots to mark the new partnership.
The Welsh Government’s Choose Well appeal aims to raise awareness of the full range of health services available in Wales. Choose Well asks people to think twice about whether they need to call 999 or visit A&E or if their need is more suitable to a minor injury unit, GP, pharmacy, NHS Direct or even self-care.
Choose Well has now formed a partnership with Boots UK to help spread the message across Wales. The partnership is part of a wider appeal which includes a mobile phone app which helps people find the most appropriate health service for their medical need and location.
The Health Minister, Lesley Griffiths said: “Choose Well is an important appeal campaign to help busy NHS services to help the people who need them most. When people become ill or are injured, it can be an automatic reaction to call 999. We are not discouraging people from dialling 999 in case of a genuine medical emergency, but it is important people are aware that an ambulance or trip to A&E is not the only port of call.
“Having Boots UK on board will help us spread this message so that people in Wales can genuinely choose well.”
The Boots UK pharmacies in Wales supporting Choose Well include Wrexham, Cardiff, Newport, Swansea and Merthyr Tydfil.
Peter Bainbridge, Director of Pharmacy, Boots UK: “Boots UK is more than happy to support the Choose Well appeal to help people in Wales make informed decisions about seeking the right treatment. We will be sharing this message with our customers during the winter period which is a particularly busy time within our pharmacies. Pharmacists are not only equipped to dispense medicine but are also qualified to give advice, health assessments, support and treatment which may also save you a trip to the doctor. Many pharmacies offer NHS services and some Boots UK pharmacies run a late night service which may be open until midnight.”
More information on the range of services in Wales is available on the Choose Well Wales website www.choosewellwales.org.uk and, for the first time, via the Choose Well app.