Pharmacies to provide additional support to patients in England

With a view to freeing up more GP appointments, patients in England are to be signposted to visit their local pharmacy for some common illnesses, rather than initially reaching for their phone and joining the early morning queue to get to see someone that day. The plan, set out earlier this month by the NHS and Government, will also give increased access to support for oral contraception with women able to go direct to a pharmacy rather than seeing a GP. Pharmacies will continue to provide helpful services such as blood pressure checks, meaning that these can be accessed almost straight away, rather than a booking needing to be made.

It is hoped that the proposed changes which will provide additional support for sinusitis, sore throat, earache, infected insect bite, impetigo, shingles, and uncomplicated urinary tract infections (UTI) in women will come into effect by the end of this year.