PEOPLE in the Wee County are being asked to ensure they get the right care in the right place as NHS Forth Valley prepares for a very challenging Easter period.

The health board continues to face large numbers of seriously ill patients requiring inpatient care along with high rates of coronavirus in local hospitals and communities across the health board area.

This, combined with large numbers of patients experiencing delays in being discharged from local hospitals, has placed unprecedented pressures on local health services.

The Emergency Department at Forth Valley Royal Hospital, which continues to be exceptionally busy, is there to treat patients with serious illnesses and injuries, like suspected heart attacks, strokes and breathing difficulties, who require emergency care.

Anyone with a non-life-threatening injury or illness, who requires urgent healthcare or advice, should call NHS 24 on 111, day or night, to access advice and treatment as quickly as possible.

NHS Forth Valley’s Medical Director, Andrew Murray, explained: “The Easter break is always a busy time for the NHS, but this year we are facing extra pressures due to the recent surge in Covid-19 cases. This is resulting in significant staffing and service pressures in our hospitals and community teams.”

“Our staff are doing everything possible to support patients but to help them please call NHS 24 on 111 for advice to help your get right care, in the right place. This will help keep avoid long waits and prevent our Emergency Department from becoming overcrowded. It will also free up our ED staff to deliver care as quickly as possible to those patients most in need of our help.”

GP practices will be closed for two days over the festive period on Friday, April 15 and Monday, April 18.

Anyone requiring urgent health advice when their GP practice is closed should call NHS 24 on 111.

Visit for more information on local health services, including details of pharmacy opening times over the Easter period.