Right Care Right Place
For all year round healthcare advice, visit our Right Care Right Place section, where you will find useful information on self-care at home, using NHS Inform for advice on dealing with common ailments, as well as signposting to local GPs, pharmacies, opticians and other healthcare services.
Your checklist to stay well this winter
Stay on top of repeat prescriptions
Have a supply of everyday medicines
Look after your mental health
Be aware of upcoming pharmacy and GP closures
Use the NHS Inform symptom checker if you become unwell
Check-in on friends, family and neighbours
Stay well this winter checklist
Over winter, you may be more likely to need our help and you can find information about where to go for the most effective support in our Right Care Right Place section.
If you're still not sure where to get the healthcare you need when you need it, visit the Scottish Government's Right Care Right Place pages.
From how to treat mild illnesses at home, to advice on winter vaccinations - we will help you to find the information you need to keep you well when the temperatures drop. Find out more below.
Order only what you need and in plenty of time.
Over winter, when the weather is unpredictable, particularly over the festive holiday period, you will want to make sure you have enough of your medicines. Be prepared and order what you need in plenty of time.
Many pharmacies and GP practices offer online services to order repeat prescriptions using your phone, computer, or tablet without having to visit 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.
Make sure that you have a medicine cabinet stocked with medicines and remedies for everyday illnesses like coughs and colds.
- Paracetamol and ibuprofen for pain relief (check the label or speak to your pharmacist to check it’s suitable for you)
- Hayfever or allergy tablets to help allergies
- Hydration sachets for diarrhoea
- Sickness tablets to stop vomiting
- Indigestion remedies such as an antacid
- Mild laxatives for constipation
See more at Right Care Right Place
GP surgeries will only be closed for a maximum of four days. Click the link below check opening times.
Pharmacies do close over public holidays but there is always a duty pharmacy open.
The winter months are dark and some of us will experience periods of loneliness and even symptoms of depression. If you, a family member, a close friend or a 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
- Mind to Mind
Winter can be a difficult time of year. 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, checking on friends and neighbours, staying fit and healthy and how supporting others can have benefits both ways for our mental wellbeing.
Don't forget about those most vulnerable people around you. From messaging groups for your stair or street, to volunteer groups within your local community, we can all find ways to provide help and support. More at ready.scot
This useful tool is ideal for self-care of mild symptoms. For information on how to best treat your symptoms at home, ideal for milder illnesses, use the symptom checker at NHS Inform.
Keep up to date on any service closures or transport issues.
Keeping well informed and planning ahead is one of the key things you can do to prevent yourself from feeling isolated when severe weather hits. There are many ways to get the latest information and we will announce any service disruptions through the following media channels.
Our website and social media channels. We have very active social accounts that we use to keep both staff and the public informed about breaking news and ongoing issues which you can follow.
Find it on our website
You can find out information about hospitals, departments and wards, visiting information as well as up to date healthcare news at our www.nhsfife.org. You can check for any ward closures before visiting any of our hospitals at our Visiting page or for GP closures at our GP practices page. For local pharmacy times over the festive period check here.
Listen to local radio
You can also hear about any major changes or disruptions to hospital service on local radio stations.
- Kingdom FM - 95.2 & 96.1
- Radio Forth - 97.3
- Tay FM - 96.4 & 102.8
Visit Fife Direct
Over at FifeDirect, Fife Council's website, you can also sign up for email or text alerts on school closures, road updates and service disruptions.
Know your first aid
You could save a life. 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
Some illnesses are more common in winter such as norovirus, coronavirus and flu. See our winter illnesses page for how best to deal with these.
We’ll be offering both flu and COVID-19 vaccines to the people most vulnerable to illness and if possible, we will give both vaccines at the same time to deliver maximum protection. See our winter vaccines programme page for more information.
Weather and traffic
It is vital to stay informed about weather, particularly during the winter months. Bad weather will often have an impact on both your travel plans if you need to access healthcare services, and occasionally, it may affect the running of the services themselves. You can find useful information on how to find up to date information from various local and national agencies and companies on our weather and traffic pages.
Emergency contacts and useful numbers
Find these in our emergency contacts section.