Back to News
Over The Counter Medication
Posted on 28 Nov 2022
A GP, nurse or pharmacist will generally not prescribe you a prescription for over-the-counter (OTC) medicines for a range of minor health conditions.
This is because of government policy to reduce the amount of money the NHS spends on prescriptions for treating minor conditions that usually get better on their own.
This also applies to patients that normally receive free prescriptions.
Instead, OTC medicines are available to buy in a pharmacy or supermarket.
The team of health professionals at your local pharmacy can offer help and clinical advice to manage minor health concerns. If your symptoms suggest it’s more serious, they’ll ensure you receive the care you need.
Seeing a Pharmacist for Minor illnesses
We are participating in a new approach to improve access for patients to GP appointments that is being rolled out nationally. The aim is to direct patients to the most appropriate healthcare professional, which may be a GP or a pharmacist.
From summer 2022 if your symptoms can be resolved by a booked consultation with the pharmacist instead of the GP, you will be given a same-day referral to a pharmacy of your choice.
We think this is a good pathway. Once you see how great your local pharmacist is as they are highly trained and skilled clinicians experienced in treating minor ailments, this pathway can make difference to you receiving treatment and advice much quicker.
This will also help us to free up GP appointments for people with more complex health needs and ensure that everyone gets treated at the right time, by the right healthcare professional.