NHS Somerset are reminding people to ensure they collect any medications before the Easter holidays.

Many GP practices in the area will be closed on Friday, April 7 and Monday, April 10.

Planned industrial action is also due to take place on April 11, meaning that this could cause some disruption to  pharmacies and healthcare settings.

Dr Bernie Marden, chief medical officer at NHS Somerset, said: “We want to make sure people are prepared in advance not only to avoid unnecessary worry, but also to help ensure care is available for those who need it the most.

“We know that bank holiday periods can add extra pressure on health and care services.

“It is important that people know which service they should use for their healthcare need, and for those who take regular medication that they have made sure they have enough to last them and if not have ordered their prescription in plenty of time.

"To make it even easier, patients can use the NHS app to order repeat prescriptions. This not only quicker and easier for the patient, but it also frees up practice lines for those needing to book urgent appointments before Easter."

NHS Somerset health bosses have also said: “While the situation may change in advance of Tuesday April 11, we are keen to make sure people are prepared in advance of the impending Junior Doctor industrial action.

“While the NHS in Somerset is committed to keeping where possible, disruption to services to a minimum, we are also asking the public to carefully consider what healthcare support they need and to choose services wisely. 

“While it is possible that non-urgent routine appointments and procedures may be cancelled during this time. Those who have a planned appointment date when industrial action is taking place should continue to attend as normal, unless they are informed by the NHS that there is a need to reschedule.

“Regardless of any industrial action taking place patients who need urgent medical care should continue to come forward, especially in emergency and life-threatening cases – when someone is seriously ill or injured, or their life is at risk."

To find out more about what healthcare services and apps are available, please visit the NHS Somerset website.