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Picking up medicine and prescriptions from pharmacies

Published: 09 April 2020

Pharmacy information and advice

If you need to pick up medicine or prescriptions from your local pharmacy here is some information on visiting pharmacies during coronavirus. Please don't leave it until you've run out of your medicines to arrange to pick them up or have them collected on your behalf.

A plea from community pharmacies

There has been a huge surge in demand for pharmacies across the country in the last couple of weeks for prescriptions, over the counter products, advice and reassurance. In addition, as we've seen in other areas of society some people are stockpiling medicines and supplies during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Like so many other front line services this is putting pressure on pharmacy teams – who themselves are suffering from staff shortages. We are all in this together and we need to ensure that everyone but particularly the more vulnerable people in our communities can still get access to the medicines they need.

Please check with your local pharmacy what their opening times are.

What you can do to relieve the pressure

To make sure that pharmacies can continue to supply the medicines and products that people need here are some things pharmacies are asking residents to do:

  • Don't stockpile - order medicines and purchase products as normal. There are enough medicines for everyone, so long as everyone only orders the prescriptions and buys the medicines they really need.
  • Collecting Prescriptions - Those advised by the NHS to stay at home, but need to collect prescription medicines, to do the following:
    • In the first instance, vulnerable patients are asked to have their medicines collected by a family member, friend or neighbour
    • If no-one is able to help collect prescriptions, vulnerable patients can ring the Community Helpline on 0300 200 1008. Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm and Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 12pm. Details of the Community Helpline are here. Please have details ready of your local pharmacy address and when your current medication runs out.
  • Avoid pharmacies if you have symptoms – please can we ask you that if you are showing symptoms of COVID-19: If you have a dry, persistent cough, fever or shortness of breath, please don't go to your local pharmacy.
  • Be patient - all pharmacies are under immense pressure and working around the clock to ensure that you get what you need.
  • Respect pharmacy staff – we are all in this together and everyone is doing the best they can under unprecedented circumstances.

If you are picking up medicine or a prescription for someone else

Here's some advice if you are collecting medicine or a prescription for someone else (pdf).

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