Think you’ve got flu? Take the £50 note test!

Patients worried that they’ve caught flu should ask themselves if they’d feel well enough to pick up a £50 note lying on the ground.
If they can, they probably have a bad cold rather than flu. Either way, the treatment is the same and patients can usually look after themselves at home.
The light-hearted but important advice is given in a new film produced by NHS Southern Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) for its campaign to help people stay warm and keep well this winter.
The two-minute video features CCG Chair Dr Sheila Newport advising a patient who feels poorly but isn’t sure if it’s a cold or flu.
Having described the £50 test, Dr Newport tells her that the best remedies for a cold or flu are lots of rest, drinking plenty of fluids, and taking painkillers like paracetamol.
She also reminds patients to “catch it, bin it, kill it” by blowing their nose with a tissue and disposing of it straight away.
The film, which is available to view on YouTube and at 
Southern Derbyshire CCG, advises patients with a cold to get out and about if they feel well enough as fresh air can help people feel better.
Dr Newport said: “There’s no cure for the common cold or flu. However, there’s a free flu vaccine available to the people most at risk of falling seriously ill if they catch the virus.
“Whether it’s a cold or flu, the best approach is for patients to stay at home, keep warm, have lots of drinks, and treat themselves with over-the-counter remedies.
“There’s no point in patients calling their GP unless their symptoms persist for more than two weeks or get markedly worse – for example if people become breathless.
“Patients taking a significant turn for the worse during the evening or at the weekend should call 111 for the GP out-of-hours service provided by Derbyshire Health United.”
People at risk of falling seriously ill if they catch flu are urged to make an appointment with their GP to have their free jab. Those eligible for the free vaccine include: 

  • Pregnant women

  • People aged 65 and over 

  • Anyone living with a health condition such as severe asthma, chest or heart complaints.

The CCG plans and buys healthcare for 525,000 patients.
NHS Southern Derbyshire CCG represents 57 GP practices and is responsible for the healthcare of 525,000 people. It is one of four clinical commissioning groups in Derbyshire.

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Published: 25/04/2014