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Guelph General offers holiday advisory

Guelph General Hospital is offering tips to help patients prepare for the holiday season in order to avoid time-consuming emergency room visits.
Holidays are a time when it can be difficult to get in to see your doctor if you’re unwell, and often people end up coming to hospital emergency rooms, which are extra busy at this time of year, the release said.
Emergency physician Dr. Aaron Smith suggests the following tips to avoid hospital visits:
• Make sure you have enough medications (both prescription and non-prescription) to get through the holidays
• Make sure all medical equipment, such as inhalers and respirators, is in good working order
• As your doctor’s office what backup coverage they offer or recommend when they are closed, and find out where and when non-urgent medical care is being offered at local clinics
• Know where the nearest 24-hour pharmacy is.
Not all hospital visits will be avoidable though, and patients could end up waiting longer than usual for non-urgent care, the release said.
Emergency department director Kelly O’Connor reminds patients they will be seen based on the severity of their illness. For emergency visits, O’Connor offers the following tips:
• Bring your OHIP card or other medical insurance information
• Bring a list or supply of your current medications
• Bring only one person to support you
• If you are bringing a child, don’t forget diapers, blankets and other comfort items.

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