Summary of report content
views and experiences of individuals accessing pharmacy and dispensing doctor services across the county. They captured the views of 250 people during the period January to March 2020
Over half access pharmacy services at least monthly and a similar number always visit the same pharmacy service. Nearly three quarters use a high street pharmacy. Nearly all can easily access pharmacy services, and most people get there by car or taxi
The thing 3 things that pharmacies do well are making sure prescriptions are appropriate and available in a timely manner; knowledgeable staff provide advice and information; good customer care with friendly, caring staff. Other services that respondents would like to access from pharmacies include a range of health checks eg blood pressure, blood tests, cholesterol checks, urine samples. Several people commented that they would like the pharmacist to be able to prescribe certain medications that would result in fewer visits to the GP surgery.
Pharmacy services could be improved by dispensing more quickly, receiving a text message to say medication is ready to collect; reduce paper copies when collecting medication to be more environmentally friendly.
Over four in five were aware of national and local publicity from the NHS to ‘selfcare’ ie to make more use of community pharmacy services as the first port of call for advice and treatment. Over two thirds said they were now more likely to contact/visit a pharmacy for advice.
Awareness of the services that pharmacies provide range from 97% for dispensing medicines to 47% for sexual health testing and supplying a limited amount of prescription medication in an emergency. Use of services range over 90% for from the dispensing medicines service to 6% for sexual health testing.
Three quarters feel comfortable about getting advice from and talking to a pharmacist about health problems, and nearly three in five are able to talk in the pharmacy without being overheard. Nearly three quarters have new medication explained to them by a pharmacist and a similar number said that the pharmacy usually has their prescribed medication in stock.
Over nine in ten said that the pharmacy staff are polite and helpful.
There were six recommendations about the speed at which medications are dispensed and the availability of medication; offering further health checks in pharmacies, privacy in pharmacies, explanations of how medications work and raising public awareness of pharmacy services.