Health Advice

This page is to give advice and guidance to patients on how to manage their long-term conditions, how to deal with minor injury and illness that doesn't require treatment from a clinician and give patients advice on several topics.

Fear of Flying

At Frome Valley Medical Centre, we do not prescribe diazepam and related medications, to help with fear of flying, or to aid with sleep during flights.

 There are several reasons why prescribing diazepam for this purpose is inappropriate.

1. Diazepam is a sedative, which may impair your ability to stay awake, concentrate, follow instructions, and react to situations (in case of emergency). This poses a potential safety risk to you and others around you on the flight.

2. Sedative drugs can make you fall asleep, but this is not a natural sleep, and your movements will be reduced. This can lead to an increased risk of blood clots, particularly during long haul flights (although the risk is still present on shorter flights).

3. Although generally well tolerated, in some patients, diazepam can cause disinhibition, aggression, and abnormal behaviours which could impact the safety of yourself and others whilst onboard. It could also result in being removed from the flight.

4. Diazepam has a long half-life and stays in your system for a significant amount of time. This may cause you to fail any potential random drug testing that you may be subjected to, as is required in some jobs.

We understand that fear of flying, and phobias associated with flying are very real, and can be incredibly distressing for people. However, prescribing diazepam (or related medications), for the purpose of flying is not the most appropriate way to address the problem and could have significant legal implications for the prescribing doctor, should anyone come to harm as a result of using medication for this purpose.

To support our patients who suffer with fear / phobia of flying, we have found some useful resources that may be helpful in managing and reducing this fear.

Some airlines offer ‘fear of flying’ courses that can help.

FF VSL GBP - easyJet Fearless Flyer Online Course (

Fear of flying course | Fearless Flyer (

Fear of flying courses from British Airways™ | Flying With Confidence

Therapies such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) can also be effective in managing phobias. You can self-refer for talking therapies through local services such as Vitaminds NHS Talking Therapies - North Somerset & South Gloucestershire (

If you would still like support from one of our GPs to manage your fear of flying, please make an appointment with reception. However, please be reminded that the GPs will not be able to prescribe diazepam to help with this concern.


Cervical Screening

Cancer Screening Awareness Week (CSAW) is an annual campaign organised by Jo’s Trust, a leading cervical cancer charity in the UK. It aims to raise awareness, and ultimately increase uptake and coverage, of the NHS Cervical Screening Programme.

We want to use this awareness week to continue to educate on the importance of cervical screening and encourage people to come forward when they are invited. This includes those who may have received an invitation previously but have not yet made an appointment.

Please see the video to the left.

NHS 111

111 online is a fast and convenient alternative to the 111 phone service and provides an option for people who want to access 111 digitally. 

Your needs will be assessed and you will be given advice about whether you need:

  • Treat yourself at home
  • Go to a Primary Care Centre

If you need face to face medical attention you may be asked to attend a Primary Care Centre.

Click here to access NHS 111 online or call 111 to speak to a staff member.