Over the last year, local Healthwatch across the country have been finding out about people's experiences of pharmacies.
We know that people are aware of the pressures on GP services and would like to help by seeking healthcare support and advice elsewhere.
There is potential for pharmacists to play a much bigger role in people's care.
Polling by YouGov and Healthwatch England in 2015 revealed:
- Three quarters of people say they would go to a pharmacist, rather than a GP, to get medication for a minor illness. Only 1 in 10 say they wouldn't.
- Over half would go to a pharmacist to seek advice for a specific minor illness or injury.
- A third of people would consider using a pharmacy instead of visiting a GP for general medical advice.
This briefing provides an overview of what local Healthwatch have heard about people's experiences of pharmacists, and how the role they could play in helping people to prevent illness, deal with minor concerns, and manage long term conditions.