PATIENTS can see a doctor at weekends or evenings in Oxfordshire to help them stay healthy this winter.

The extended-hours appointments aim to allow people to see a GP or other healthcare professional at a time that better suits them.

People who contact their GP surgery or the NHS 111 service may be offered an extended hours appointment at their own surgery or at a nearby practice.

Or, they can request one if it is more convenient.

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Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (OCCG), the board of county doctors who chose how NHS money is spent in the county – including at GP surgeries – said the extended hours would make it easier to see a family doctor at a more convenient time.

Ed Capo-Bianco, urgent care lead at OCCG, said: "It means patients can see a GP, or other medical professional, for prompt advice and treatment at times that suits them, even though it may not be at their own surgery.

"This additional capacity allows GPs to see more vulnerable patients, especially older people more promptly reducing the risk of them being admitted to hospital. And, as we enter the busy winter period, evening and weekend appointments will help to relieve some of the pressure that practices are experiencing during usual opening hours, helping GPs to meet the increasing demand for appointments."