17th November 2015 – Celebrities pledge support to encourage the nation to Stay Well This Winter
With the winter season upon us and the launch of Self Care Week today (Monday 16th November), a number of the country’s famous faces are supporting a major drive to help the nation keep well over the winter months.
The celebrities backing ‘The Stay Well This Winter’ campaign, a joint initiative from NHS England and Public Health England, have been photographed in their woollies holding the letters W-I-N-T-E-R. Each letter represents an action people and their families can take to ensure they stay well over the winter months.
The latest data reveals that excess winter deaths contribute to about 1 in 20 of all deaths per year, with older people who may be frail, or who have existing long term health conditions, most at risk. The Stay Well This WINTER messages, which are aimed at these audiences and carers are:
- Warm: Keep your house warm this winter at least 18°C (65F)
- Immunisations: Get your flu vaccination
- Neighbours: Keep an eye on elderly neighbours and relatives
- Timely: Seek advice from a pharmacist at first sign of illness
- Enough: Pick up repeat prescriptions so you have enough while pharmacies/surgeries are closed
- Restock: Make sure you have enough food and medicine in the cupboards
Actress Barbara Windsor, who is supporting the campaign said:
“It’s the simplest things that we sometimes forget, and when remembered, they can make all the difference! The Stay Well This Winter campaign is a great way of reminding people about the little things they can do to make sure they’re protecting themselves as the cold weather sets in, whether that’s staying warm, stocking up on prescription medicines or checking in on friends and neighbours to make sure they are keeping well”.
TV doctor, Dr. Rosemary Leonard who wants to encourage the public to be more aware of the dangers that winter can bring said:
“Elderly people and those with long term health conditions are particularly vulnerable to winter illnesses so I’d urge anyone that falls into these groups to take heed of these messages and plan ahead for Winter.
“With over 1 million people stating that they are always or often lonely, crucially, this initiative reminds us to keep an eye on elderly neighbours and relatives. Simple actions like making a phone call to say hello or ensuring our loved ones have stocked up on prescription medicines takes no time at all but can make all the difference.”
The launch of these iconic images coincides with the start of Self Care week which aims to help people understand when it is safe to look after their own health, when to seek treatment, and where to access health advice, whether it is from the pharmacist, GP, nurse or if emergency treatment is required.
Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, Medical Director for NHS England, said:
“Through TV, radio, posters and leaflets we will help people know where to seek help and get advice – whether it’s pharmacies, NHS Choices, calling 111 or A&E.
“It’s critical we all do what we can help others stay well this winter. Think of the elderly. Half live alone and one third only occasionally socialise if at all, so they are slow to seek help. Those who are frail can get very sick very quickly – even a cold can end up with a stay in hospital.
“In keeping with the spirit of our NHS, let’s all play our part in helping each other stay well this winter.”