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Pharmacy First service available in Liverpool

25 Apr 2022

People in Liverpool can now get prescription medicines for certain conditions direct from a local pharmacy.

Launched by NHS Liverpool CCG and Community Pharmacy Liverpool, Pharmacy First is a convenient new NHS service that is now available for patients across the city.

It allows people to walk straight into their nearest pharmacy and access prescription medicines and treatments for a number of minor conditions – without needing to contact or see a GP first.

People can seek prescription treatment for any of the following common symptoms at a local pharmacy under Pharmacy First:

  • Sore throats
  • Urinary infections
  • Eye infections (conjunctivitis)
  • Oral thrush in babies
  • Impetigo
  • Mild skin conditions such as dermatitis, eczema or insect bite reactions
  • Nappy rash for babies
  • Minor cuts, burns, and scalds

To start using the service, simply drop into any Liverpool pharmacy and ask about treatment for any of these conditions under ‘Pharmacy First’.

Any treatment provided under Pharmacy First is completely free for people who don’t pay for their prescriptions, and charged at the normal prescription rate for those who do.

Matt Harvey, Chief Officer for Community Pharmacy Liverpool said:

“Pharmacy First is a really exciting development for pharmacies and for patients in Liverpool, as it means that many people will be able to get treatment for minor health problems more quickly and conveniently, without needing to wait for a GP appointment first.”

“A pharmacist will simply ask a few quick questions, and as long as a patient is suitable for treatment and hasn’t recently been prescribed treatment for the same thing already, they’ll be able to offer access to it there and then – no prescription required.”

Dr Janet Bliss, a local GP and Chair of NHS Liverpool CCG said:

Using Pharmacy First can be a really quick and easy alternative to visiting your local GP Practice or NHS Walk-in Centre for treatment and advice for certain common conditions.

“Not only does using this service allow patients to get faster treatment for these minor conditions, but it will also help free up GP appointments for patients with more complex health problems that can’t be dealt with in a pharmacy setting too – so it really will benefit lots of patients.”

The Pharmacy First service is suitable for most people to use, and parents/carers can also access the service with their child or young person.

However, anyone who has recurring symptoms or has already recently received treatment for the same condition may not be eligible. This is because a recurring problem could indicate that further medical investigation is needed by a GP.

Pharmacy First will operate alongside the already popular Care at the Chemist scheme, which allows pharmacists to provide non-prescription (over the counter) drugs for a wide range of minor conditions – either free if you don’t pay for a prescription, or at a lower charge if you do.

Although the schemes don’t cover every single condition, they do cover a lot of the most common ones, which makes a pharmacist a great place to seek advice and treatment.

Local pharmacists are highly trained health professionals who can provide lots of helpful health advice and treatments – and many of them are open from early until late into the evenings, and over weekends too.

For more information about Pharmacy First, please ask a member of staff in your local pharmacy.

Please note: The Pharmacy First offer is commissioned by NHS Liverpool CCG and is currently only available in Liverpool-based pharmacies.