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Public urged to enjoy the hot weather safely

Image of thermometer up close showing high temperature and blue sky.

Morriston Hospital's Clinical Director for Emergency Medicine has issued a plea to the public to enjoy the heatwave responsibly.

Mark Poulden said the health service is already extremely busy and may not be able to respond or offer treatment for heat-related illness and injury as quickly as you would like.

Here's his full statement - with top tips for staying safe below.

"The heatwave is putting additional strain on a health service that was already experiencing high demand for all services from GPs through to emergency departments (A&Es).

Like emergency departments across Wales, Morriston Hospital has been seeing higher numbers of sicker patients coming through the doors for some time. As the Welsh Ambulance Service is under extreme pressure, we have begun seeing patients walk in with life-threatening conditions.

All of this has a knock-on effect of increasing waiting times for those with less serious injuries or illnesses.

Now we are seeing patients arriving with weather-related injuries too.

We have seen a number of sunburn cases, but thankfully they were mostly relatively minor. And we’ve seen some people who have been injured doing outdoor activities in the nice weather.

So, our message to the public is enjoy the nice weather. It’s very good for our general wellbeing. But please be careful as the health service is already extremely busy and may not be able to respond or offer treatment for heat-related illness and injury as quickly as you would like."

Here are his top tips for staying safe.

  • Keep yourself and your family safe in this extreme weather by staying out of the sun between 11am and 3pm, using high factor sunscreen if you do go out, wearing loose-fitting clothing and drinking regular fluids. Keep a close eye on the very young and old because they are more susceptible to the heat.
  • Please check on elderly neighbours to make sure they have everything they need.
  • If you want to cool off in the sea, stick to areas patrolled by RNLI lifeguards if you can, don’t drink alcohol before going in and be aware of tides and currents.
  • Please don’t come to ED unless it’s an emergency. Your GP surgery is best suited to deal with minor illnesses. Pharmacies can also offer medicines free of charge for common ailments. And anyone over the age of one with a minor injury can be seen at our Minor Injury Unit at Neath Port Talbot Hospital. It’s open between 7.30am and 11pm, seven days a week.

 

 

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