POOLE Hospital chiefs are urging people to keep A&E free for "genuine emergencies" as they are still experiencing pressures.

Unless it is a life or limb threatening emergency, or unless advised to go to A&E by a healthcare professional, staff are calling on the public to avoid attending.

They are advising people to seek help from a local pharmacist, call NHS 111 or go online to NHS Choices.

Mark Mould, chief operating officer at Poole Hospital, said in a tweet: "Poole Hospital under pressure, keep A&E free for genuine emergencies, due to the number of very sick patients needing to be admitted.

"A&E doctors are asking people not to go to A&E unless it is a life or limb-threatening emergency, or if advised to go there by a healthcare professional."