EALING and Northwick Park hospitals are appealing for people to think before coming into A&E as both sites registered a record number of attendances this week.

Hot weather, combined with a spike in respiratory conditions like asthma and hay fever, led to more than 700 people being treated at Northwick Park and almost 600 in Ealing on Monday.

A three-day junior doctors strike starting today (14) is likely to compound the problem, putting emergency departments under even more pressure.

With junior doctors making up almost 50% of all NHS doctors, the impact of industrial action is expected to be significant.

Dr Jon Baker, Chief Medical Officer at London North West University Healthcare Trust, said: “Many of the conditions we’re seeing this week can be treated swiftly and effectively by your local pharmacy or GP.

“Please help us by using these options as a first port of call unless your condition is life threatening.

“We’re doing everything we can to keep disruption to a minimum, but we are expecting this week to be very challenging and ask patients not to come to hospital unless it’s essential.

“Visit your pharmacy, GP practice or call 111.nhs.uk if you need advice.

“As part of keeping our services safe during the strike, we’ve had to reschedule planned operations and appointments.

“We’re very sorry if that’s affected you or someone in your family and will rearrange your visit as soon as we can.”