Hospital chiefs have said that "extra steps" are being taken to help tackle soaring temperatures.

Suffolk and most of the rest of the UK were issued with an "extreme heat" warning on Monday.

Temperatures in East Anglia have already reached as high as 30C, with more warm weather on the way.

The highest temperature ever in the UK was 38.7C, recorded in Cambridge on July 25, 2019.

Currently temperatures are expected to reach mid-thirties on Sunday and Monday.

A West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust spokesperson said: “We take extra steps in periods of warm weather to make sure staff and patients are as comfortable as possible.

"This might include doing extra water rounds on our wards to keep patients hydrated; providing patients and staff with free ice lollies to help them keep cool; regularly monitoring temperatures around our sites and making temporary cooling resources available where we can.

“We are extremely busy and ask our community to help us by choosing the appropriate help for their condition.

“For non-urgent healthcare issues local pharmacies can help deal with conditions such as minor dehydration, sunburn, skin rashes and insect bites.

"NHS 111 online and telephone services offer help and advice 24/7 and can link you to an urgent out-of-hours GP appointment if necessary.”

Deputy chief executive at East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Colchester and Ipswich hospitals and community services in northeast Essex and east Suffolk, Neill Moloney said: “We have robust adverse weather plans in place to make sure we are ready for all eventualities.

"All our services are running as normal and, as always, our teams are working extremely hard to care for our patients safely, not just in our hospitals, but in patients’ homes and in the local community too.”

According to the Met Office, population-wide adverse health effects are likely to be experienced, not limited to those most vulnerable to extreme heat, leading to potential serious illness or danger to life.

Government advice is that 999 services should be used in emergencies only and people should seek guidance from 111 for non-emergency health advice.