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Getting the right treatment - finding services

Getting the right treatment - finding services

Details of all the services we provide at North Middlesex University Hospital and how to access them are in the 'Our Services' section of the website. Inpatient services are mainly accessed by referrals from GPs (family doctors) or hospital doctors. Patients can self-refer to our accident and emergency department (A&E). However it is worth considering the following alternatives: 

Self-care
Keeping a well stocked medicine cabinet at home can help you treat many minor ailments. Colds, coughs, indigestion and many other minor complaints can all be treated with medicines that are available over the counter.  Ask a pharmacist for advice on what medicines to keep at home.  Always follow the instructions on the medicine label and consult your doctor if the illness continues or becomes more severe.

Your local pharmacist
Pharmacists offer professional free health advice at any time - you don't need an appointment.  From coughs and colds to aches and pains, they can give you expert help on everyday illnesses. They can answer questions about prescribed and over-the-counter medicines. Pharmacists can also advise on healthy eating, obesity and giving up smoking.  Some pharmacists have private areas where you can talk in confidence. They may suggest you visit your GP for more serious symptoms. It is possible to purchase many medicines from the chemist without a prescription.

Many pharmacists offer a service known as the Minor Ailment Scheme for free advice and medicine to treat common conditions without needing to visit a GP (your family doctor) to get a prescription. 

Our local clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) have details of the minor ailments scheme on their websites: Enfield CCG and Haringey CCG

NHS 111 - free telephone advice line
If you are feeling unwell and need a telephone health assessment, please call the national NHS 111 service free of charge from any phone by dialling 1 1 1. They will help refer you to the appropriate service. 

NHS Choices website
The NHS Choices website has information about conditions and treatments, an automated symptom checker and information about commonly used medicines. It also provides details of all NHS providers in England, including local GPs (family doctors). Patients may provide and read feedback on NHS services.   

Your GP (family doctor)
Most GPs (family doctors) offer a range of appointment times and open appointment sessions to registered patients. Details of local GP services are on the NHS Choices website

Accident & Emergency (A&E)
Major A&E departments assess and treat patients who have serious injuries or illnesses. Generally, you should visit A&E or call 999 for emergencies, such as:

  • loss of consciousness
  • pain that is not relieved by simple analgesia
  • acute confused state
  • persistent, severe chest pain
  • breathing difficulties.
If you are injured or seriously ill, you should go, or be taken, to A&E. If an ambulance is needed you can call 999, the emergency phone number in England. 

Major A&E departments offer access 365 days a year and usually open 24 hours a day. North Middlesex University Hospital's A&E department is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, but please note that not all hospitals have an A&E department.

Once you're at an A&E department, a doctor or nurse will assess your condition and decide on further action. You may have to wait a short while before you are seen. There is a national operational standard in place for A&E services under which 95% of people attending A&E should be seen, diagnosed and treated within four hours of arrival.

Page last updated: September 2016