The public is being urged to reserve 999 calls and A&E visits for 'genuine' life-threatening conditions or injuries as health services brace themselves for strike action.

Junior doctors will be participating in four days of industrial action from August 11-15.

Dr Alexandra Kent, the medical director of the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board, said: "The public can expect long delays and more disruption to NHS services during this latest period of industrial action. It has been even more challenging to plan for this strike action due to staff summer holiday leave, meaning there are fewer staff to help cover essential services."

For urgent health needs that are not life-threatening, individuals can utilise the 111 online or phone service, which is accessible 24/7.

Dr Kent said: "We are prioritising emergency and urgent care services, and we really need the public's help to only call 999 and attend emergency departments if it is a genuine life-threatening injury or illness.

"Some hospital treatments and appointments will need to be rescheduled. However patients will be contacted directly to inform them of any changes and should assume their scheduled appointment or treatment will go ahead unless they have heard otherwise, there is no need to contact the NHS.

"GP practices and local pharmacies will also be open as usual during the industrial action to help with advice and treatments."

Parents, carers, and young people can access the Healthier Together app or website.

Anyone needing urgent mental health support should seek assistance from their local Crisis Team.