Most cold or flu symptoms and minor injuries can be cared for at home, while your pharmacist will have the right remedies for minor ailments such as a headache or diarrhoea.
For more severe symptoms or health concerns, you may need to contact your GP. Your community is here to help when you are feeling under the weather.
Think self care
Many illnesses can be treated in your home by using over-the-counter medicines and getting plenty of rest. Choosing well ensures you receive the rest and recovery you need, meaning busy health services can help those who need them most.
For minor health concerns, your local pharmacist can help by giving advice on illnesses and the medicines you need to treat them. If you can’t get to a pharmacy yourself, ask someone to go for you or phone them. Your pharmacist can also tell you if what you have is more serious and if you need to see a doctor. Visit our Think Pharmacy page for more information on what they offer.
Call your pharmacy or contact them online before going in person. You can get medicines delivered or ask someone to collect them.
Visit our Community Pharmacies page for a list of pharmacies near you.
You should make an appointment with your local GP if you have a health concern. We have made changes to how we provide care to make it safer for you during the coronavirus pandemic. You may notice a difference in the way your call is dealt with and the questions you are asked before you can make an appointment. Don’t worry, our priority is still getting you seen by the right person at the right time for you.
See: https://www.gov.im/doctors for a list of Isle of Man GPs and their contact details
Something more serious?
If you are 65 or over, or in one of the other ‘clinically vulnerable at-risk groups’, it’s important to get medical help as soon as you feel unwell.
If you have already contacted your pharmacist or GP and your symptoms have got worse or you have more severe symptoms to those listed above, you may need to contact:
- Manx Emergency Doctor Service (MEDS) - For out-of-hours emergencies that cannot wait until the next day. If you require medical assistance when your doctor’s surgery is closed, telephone 650355. A receptionist will pass your details over to a doctor who will take the appropriate course of action.
- Ramsey MIU – For minor illnesses and injuries that need immediate attention. You do not need an appointment however you can contact them on 811800 before your attendance where you will be seen by an experienced nurse practitioner or GP
- Emergency Department (ED) or 999 – Emergency services are very busy. They should only be used in very serious or life-threatening situations. If you, or someone you are with is showing signs of being very ill or badly injured, telephone 999 and tell the operator that there is a medical emergency.
Could it be coronavirus?
If you have a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, shortness of breath or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste, it could be coronavirus (COVID-19).
See symptoms and self-assessment for more information.
What else could it be?
With winter, comes a range of viruses. It’s often difficult to know how to treat your illness until you analyse the symptoms of what you have. Some of the most common winter viruses are
- Colds, runny nose and sore throat – These can generally be treated at home with over-the-counter remedies, plenty of rest and hydration
- Diarrhoea and vomiting – D&V is common in adults, children and babies and is often caused by a stomach bug. It should stop in a few days. There are several dos and don’ts for treating the virus and stopping it from spreading, which can be found at https://www.gov.im/norovirus . As with any stomach bug, you should wait 48 hours after symptoms stop before returning to work or school. Telephone for advice and stay at home.
- Influenza (flu) – Flu is a highly infectious virus that usually occurs in the winter each year. Symptoms come on very quickly and often include a high temperature, tiredness, a headache, general aches and pains and a dry, chesty cough. Some people are more susceptible to the flu virus and for them it can increase the risk of a more serious illness such as bronchitis or pneumonia, which is why a vaccine has been made available for certain groups. In otherwise heathy individuals, the flu usually goes away on its own but it is important to rest at home for a few days to stop it from spreading. For more information on the flu visit https://www.gov.im/flu