NHS bosses have issued advice to Brighton Pride revellers to help ease pressure on health services this weekend.
As hundreds of thousands of people are set to celebrate Pride this weekend, Brighton and Hove Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has asked people to look after themselves to avoid needing medical attention.
Dr David Supple, clinical chair at NHS Brighton and Hove CCG, said: “We are proud to welcome and support Pride in our city and hope everyone has a fantastic time.
“The NHS is doing everything it can with the resources available to prepare for Pride weekend, now we are calling the public to action to #HelpMyNHS by looking after their health to avoid unnecessary treatment and ensuring they access the right service for their need. This will free up emergency medical services to help those in most need.”
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It asked people to avoid sunburn by finding shade between 11am and 3pm, as this weekend is supposed to be a scorcher – with temperatures hitting 28 degrees.
People are asked to cover up by wearing a t-shirt and hat, and to apply at least factor 20 sunscreen every few hours
Finally, the NHS urged people to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of cold drinks, and avoid excess alcohol, caffeine and hot drinks.
If anyone does feel unwell and needs non-urgent medical attention there will be first at tents at Marine Parade and the Pleasure Gardens at Old Steine.
And there will be two first aid areas at Preston Park for the Pride Festival.
The Brighton Station Walk in Centre will be open to those who have minor injuries or need sexual health advice.
People with non-urgent medical problems can visit www.sussexhelpmy.nhs.uk which highlights these local alternatives to A&E.
Similarly, the South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) also expects to be busy during Pride weekend, and urges people to ‘be sensible and look out for each other’.
Tim Fellows, SECAmb operating unit manager for Brighton, said: “Operationally, Pride is always a very busy weekend and I know all my colleagues, both staff and volunteers, including our community first responders, will be working really hard to ensure people receive the help they require.
“But people can also help us by being sensible and looking out for each other. It’s going to be a warm weekend and even without Pride a very busy two days in the city. We’re asking people to act responsibly so that they don’t find themselves or others requiring an ambulance for something which could have been avoided. If you go out as a group, come home as a group, and please look after your friends.”
More than 150 SECAmb staff will talk part in the Community Parade on Saturday (August 4), alongside a specially ‘wrapped’ ambulance featuring a special Pride design. The Trust is also expecting to welcome representatives from all 10 of England’s ambulance services as well as colleagues from other NHS Trusts.
Will Bellamy, chair of Pride in SECAmb, said: “We always have an amazing turnout for Pride and it’s always a great sight to see so many staff joining and celebrating with their local community. The support we receive is always very humbling as the public show their appreciation and I’m sure it will be even more special this year as the NHS celebrates its 70th anniversary. It is important that we celebrate diversity in our organisation and it is something we’re very proud of.”
For more advice from SECAmb on staying safe in the sun, visit: www.secamb.nhs.uk/our_services/hot_weather_advice.aspx