Published: 16 December 2016

Stay safe and healthy over Christmas

Christmas shopping

Student Health Services have a number of tips that will help you to stay safe and healthy during the Christmas period.

Alcohol

Did you know that binge drinking in Liverpool causes more ill health than anywhere else in the country?

If you drink alcohol, here are four small changes you could make if you’d like to reduce your risk of problems both now and in the future.

1. Try having at least two alcohol free days each week.
2. Or why not cut out drinking while you’re getting ready for a night out?
3. Alternating alcoholic drinks with a soft drink or water or switching to low alcoholic drinks can also make a big difference.
4. The maximum recommended daily units are three to four units per day for men (one pint of strong lager) and two to three units per day for women (one large glass of wine). Don’t save your daily units up for a big night out though.

Access health services during the Christmas period

There are a number of health services on campus and in the city for students.

If you’re registered with Student Health in Liverpool, but are going back home to spend time with friends and family over Christmas, there are still some simple and effective ways you can access health advice.

Here’s a run-down of what health services you can access and where over the Christmas period:

Services

Telephone or email the Student Health practice

Telephone and email consultations are available at Brownlow Health. You can discuss health related issues with our clinicians between 8am and 6.30pm. The doctor will access your health records to give you the most appropriate advice, and will document the email conversation in your records, as with any other consultation.

Please note that whilst Student Health makes every effort to use secure e-mail, this cannot be considered a 100% secure form of communication, so you need to consider this when revealing personal information.

We can’t provide appointment bookings or issue prescriptions through the email advice service, but these can be accessed via the secure online services.

Pharmacy

Your local pharmacist will offer consultations and provide advice and treatment for a range of minor illnesses.

All students are entitled to free prescriptions up to the age of 19, when statutory prescription prices will then apply.

Aged 19 or over and need a free prescription? Please ask at reception in Student Health (building 502 on campus map) or the Student Health Advice Centre (SHAC) (at Carnatic Halls) for a HC1 form, which may entitle you to free prescriptions after the age of 19.

Walk-in centres

Walk-in centres are nurse-led services at sites across the city, which provide treatment for minor illnesses and injuries. They also give confidential health advice. Their opening times vary and information can be found at on the NHS website. No appointment is needed.

NHS 111

111 is the NHS non-emergency number. It’s fast, easy and free. Call 111 and speak to a highly trained adviser, supported by healthcare professionals. They will ask you a series of questions to assess your symptoms and immediately direct you to the best medical care for you.

NHS 111 is available 24-hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.

Local GP

If you do choose to see a GP in the place where you are spending the holidays, you may be seen by registering with them as a temporary resident only. This temporary GP should ask you to complete a GMS3 form, so that when you return to Liverpool you can remain with your permanent GP.

Out-of-hours GP service

For access to GP support and advice at the weekend, please phone your GP practice number and you will be directed to the out-of-hours service. Keep a pen and paper handy to jot any information down.

Hospital accident and emergency departments

Hospital accident and emergency is for serious illness or accidents that need urgent treatment in hospital.

If you are unsure whether you need to visit hospital, please ring your GP practice or attend the walk-in centre for advice.

Sexual health advice

To access free, local sexual health advice and services, such as free contraception including Intra Uterine Devices (IUD) and emergency contraception, or for information regarding sexually shared infections or pregnancy testing, please visit the Sexual Health Liverpool website, where you will find lots of useful information.

For further Information about all health services for students at the University, please contact Brownlow Health on 0151 285 4578 or visit the Brownlow Health website.

Protect your property

To keep your property safe, follow these tips:

1. If you are leaving the house, remember to always lock all doors and windows and activate any house alarms.
2. Light timers are a good way of making it appear that the house or flat is occupied.
3. Make sure that any valuables are not in view. Close curtains at night.
4. If you live in a flat or shared accommodation, make sure you know who is following you in to the building.
5. Register your valuables for free on the Immobilise website.
6. Prevent flooding – know where your main stop valve is. Follow the winter weather advice from United Utilities.

Visit the Liverpool Student Homes website for more information on home security.

Personal safety

Many of you will be planning to celebrate this special time of year by visiting the various pubs, bars, clubs and restaurants in the area.  Follow these simple tips to make sure you plan a safe night out:

1. Plan your journey home before you set off. Pre-book a taxi, or arrange a lift with a non-drinker. Perhaps even select one of your group to be the designated driver.
2. Don’t hitch-hike or accept lifts from strangers.
3. If you are travelling alone on public transport, try to avoid waiting alone at isolated bus stops. Have change ready to avoid getting your purse or wallet out in public.
4. Remember to use a licensed taxi or black cab.
5. When you’re out, never leave your drink unattended and never accept a drink of someone you have just met or don’t totally trust.
6. Never leave your handbag or mobile phone unattended, even for a short time.
7. If you need to withdraw cash, try to do it in the day, when there are more people about and only take out what you need.
8. Enjoy the celebrations, but know your limits and stay in control. Find out more about Drink Safe Enjoy More.
9. Never get involved in violence. Even if you didn’t start a fight you can still be fined or arrested for being involved.

You can also find more personal safety information from Merseyside Police.

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