Stay Well This Winter – safety behaviours
As COVID-19 and flu can spread more in the winter, it’s important to do the things that help to keep everyone safe. The Stay Well This Winter campaign has been developed to remind and encourage the public of the key safety behaviours.
- Wear a face covering in indoor crowded spaces and on public transport
- Socialise in well-ventilated spaces when you can
- Follow the latest guidance if you’re unwell
And specifically for members of the public that need more protection from COVID-19 and flu:
- Consider wearing a Distance Aware lanyard or badge when you’re out in public places
- Get the winter COVID-19 and flu vaccines
Common winter ailments
Some ailments are more common in winter such as norovirus, coronavirus and flu. See our winter ailments page for how best to deal with these.
Pharmacy and prescriptions
Over the festive holiday period, you will want to make sure you have enough of your medicines. Be prepared and order only what you need of your repeat medication in plenty of time. GP surgeries will only be closed for a maximum of four days. Many pharmacies and GP practices now offer online services to order repeat prescriptions using your phone or tablet without having to set foot in a pharmacy. Please remember that over busy times, prescriptions will take a little longer to be processed. If you do run out of medicine, you can contact your community pharmacist for advice.
Community pharmacies continue to offer a number of services that reduce the need to visit your GP. The NHS Pharmacy First Scotland service is available from all pharmacies in Scotland and provides the opportunity for free advice and treatment for a number of minor conditions. You can choose which pharmacy to use and in most cases, you won’t have to make an appointment.
Know your first aid
Every year in the UK, thousands of people die or are seriously injured in incidents. Many deaths could be prevented if first aid is given before emergency services arrive.
If someone is injured you should:
- first check that you and the casualty aren't in any danger, and, if possible, make the situation safe
- if necessary, dial 999 or 112 for an ambulance
- when it's safe to do so carry out basic first aid
See more about basic first aid at NHS Inform
Mental Health and wellbeing – staying positive this winter
For general advice and tips about keeping well and staying positive during the winter months have a look at NHS inform’s 5 Steps guide. It has valuable advice about the value of building and maintaining relationships (especially when inter-household visiting is not possible), staying fit and healthy and how supporting others can have benefits both ways for our mental wellbeing.
The winter months are dark and with current advice to stay at home and avoid travel, some of us will experience periods of loneliness and even symptoms of depression. If you, a family member, a close friend or neighbour is experiencing despair or distress please call:
- For medical emergencies, call 999.
- NHS 24 on 111
- Samaritans on 116 123
- Breathing Space on 0800 838 587
Find more in our emergency contacts section.
Accessing emergency contraception
A free emergency contraception and advice service may be available at your local Pharmacy. Sexual Health Fife can also assist you can find more information on their services here.
See more on our Safer Scotland pages