With the hot weather and many visitors coming to Dorset for the summer holiday, hospitals across the county are under significant pressure.

People are again being urged to remember that A&E is only to be used in life-threatening situations and those who turn up inappropriately may be turned away. Residents are encouraged to help reduce unnecessary pressures on urgent care services by choosing the right care for their needs.

For issues that require urgent attention but aren’t life threatening, visit www.nhs.uk to find your nearest Minor Injuries Unit or Urgent Treatment Centre. There are 8 across Dorset that can help with a wide range of ailments and injuries.

The new WaitLess app shows live wait times across all of Dorset’s urgent care services, taking into account travel distances, allowing people with minor injuries to make an informed choice about where to get treatment.

WaitLess is available on both Android and Apple devices.

Dorset’s 150 pharmacies also have a lot to offer. They are not just a place to collect a prescription; pharmacists can help you treat a variety of minor illnesses or conditions. If you need a GP appointment, you will be advised.

If you’re affected by a mental health issue, talk to your GP or if you’re already a service user, directly contact your Community Mental Health Team. We also now have the Retreat in Bournemouth, a safe place to discuss your problems and access peer support, 7 days a week.

If you’re planning to go to Camp Bestival in Lulworth, remember to bring any medication you need with you.

Do what you can to look after yourself, your family and neighbours during the hot weather. Stay well hydrated, make sure you cover up, take shade, use at least factor 15 sunscreen and reapply every few hours.

As always, if in doubt go to NHS 111 Online. Answer a few questions about your main symptom to find out where to get help and get a call back from a nurse, if you need one. Alternatively, call NHS 111 and a trained adviser will quickly direct you to the best medical care for your needs.

Visit www.staywelldorset.nhs.uk for more information.