Cold weather is expected to sweep across our county this weekend – and Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust is advising people to think about their options if they need medical attention.

Snow and ice arrived overnight last night with temperatures plunging – and more is forecast tomorrow and on Sunday.

Travelling may become difficult if these forecasts prove accurate, so residents should think about how they could best access any healthcare they need – and how to avoid a lengthy trip to an Accident and Emergency Department.

The best option may be to stay at home to recover, to visit a pharmacy for treatment, to book a GP appointment, use one of Shropshire four Minor Injuries Units, or to call NHS 111 for advice and signposting to a healthcare service.

Dr Mahadeva Ganesh, medical director at Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust, said: “A&E should only be used for very serious or life-threatening injuries or illness. There are a range of alternative places people can turn to for help, and if someone isn’t sure then they can call NHS 111 for further advice.

“More often than not self-care is the only treatment you need for minor ailments, such as headaches, colds and flu, or minor injuries like muscle pulls and strains.

“We have Minor Injury Units in Bridgnorth, Ludlow, Oswestry and Whitchurch that can treat a lot of injuries a lot more quickly than busy A&E departments, and save many people an unnecessary journey.

“Your local pharmacy is a great place to go for healthcare advice on many common conditions. And you should visit your GP if you’re still experiencing symptoms of illness after a few days.”

People can find a whole host of information about keeping warm and well this winter and being as prepared as possible on our website at