Pharmacists and chemists play a key role in providing quality healthcare to patients. Working in the community and hospitals, pharmacists use their clinical expertise together with their practical knowledge to ensure the safe supply and use of medicines by patients and members of the public.

What services are offered by pharmacists?

They offer advice on common problems such as coughs, colds, aches and pains, as well as healthy eating and stopping smoking. They can also help you decide whether you need to see a doctor.

You can talk to your pharmacist in confidence, even about the most personal symptoms and you don't need to make an appointment. It is possible to walk into any community pharmacy and ask to speak with the pharmacist. They may be able to spend some time with you. Most pharmacies now have a private consultation area where patients can discuss issues with pharmacy staff without being overheard by other members of the public.

Pharmacists dispense your prescriptions and other medicines, may offer testing and screening for common conditions and can advise on minor ailments. You may be able to get medicine from a pharmacist in an emergency, subject to certain conditions. Supplying emergency medicine is a private service, not funded by the NHS. This means your pharmacist can charge for it. The charge will vary depending on the medicine and the pharmacist's policy - speak with your pharmacist.

The services that may be available from your local pharmacy are:

  • Emergency contraception
  • Vaccination advice
  • Truss fittings
  • Incontinence supplies
  • Needle exchange and supervised drug administration
  • Pregnancy testing
  • Stop smoking services
  • Medicines Use Reviews
  • New Medicine Service
  • Chlamydia screening and treatment
  • Weight management

Minor ailments include:

  • viruses
  • Minor injuries
  • Tummy troubles
  • Women's health
  • Skin conditions
  • Allergies
  • Aches and pains
  • Children's problems

What If I Need To See A Pharmacist Out Of Hours?

Certain pharmacies open voluntarily outside of normal working hours.