New Self-Care Survey Report: Take care of yourself and the NHS

As we mark the start of Self-Care week in the UK, PAGB has today released a new report detailing the latest data on self-care and exploring the challenges and benefits of patients taking a more proactive approach to care for common health conditions.

Self-treatable conditions are incredibly common, with our research finding that 96% of people in the UK experienced at least one self-treatable condition in the past year. The top 5 self-treatable conditions are:

  • Colds – 59%
  • Headache – 54%
  • Backache – 51%
  • Coughs – 51%
  • Blocked Nose – 49%

With two in five adults sharing that they have asked for a GP appointment for a minor health issue, and a smaller but still significant number of people (8%) going to A&E departments for non-urgent and relatively minor health conditions, our research shows that education is the key to increasing self-care. Today’s report highlights differences in consumers’ approach to self-care and demonstrates which self-treatable conditions people feel both more and less confident in treating.

Our Chief Executive Officer, Michelle Riddalls, shared:

“We are facing unprecedented challenges in primary care, with fewer and fewer GPs struggling to treat more and more patients.

“It’s really important that consumers are educated in where to find reliable self-care resources, so they have the knowledge and confidence to manage minor conditions themselves and know when a problem is serious enough to require the help of a GP or A&E.”

Increasing self-care and empowering patients to manage self-treatable conditions could also deliver potentially huge dividends for the NHS. Analysis by Frontier Economics suggests that greater use of self-care and over-the-counter medicines (OTCs) would save the NHS £1.7billion a year.

For more detail, download our report: Take care of yourself and the NHS

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