We’d like your views about the value of Community Pha... - NRAS


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We’d like your views about the value of Community Pharmacy which is becoming more integrated with primary care. Please tick all that apply:

Anita-NRAS profile imageAnita-NRASPartner240 Voters

Please select all that apply:

91 Replies
rawillbebeaten profile image

I don't know about Community Pharmacy - it sounds very useful, but I've never been made aware of it in my area - Dorset BH

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to rawillbebeaten

where do you get your prescriptions


rawillbebeaten profile image
rawillbebeaten in reply to KittyJ

The Doctor sends them to a local Pharmacy, a chain, but has never suggested that they will help with any queries

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to rawillbebeaten

that is a community pharmacy 😊

FloozieDuck profile image

I don't know about them,would use if we had.

J1707- profile image

I don’t use mine they are useless always rushed so can’t spend quality time answering questions,never have the medications . I use a different one not connected to a Gp practice. They are much easier to talk to and never let me down .

strawclutching profile image
strawclutching in reply to J1707-

I have to agree about my local one. So busy, and I have to explain a lot of medical history which generally goes beyond their knowledge. I've also had problems when picking up meds that are out of stock but they don't have time to let you know before you make the trip. When you're chronically sick, it takes a lot of effort some days to even get there, then to be told you should have gone earlier and they would have told you then that they were out of stock. Never get an apology, but that's how service is these days. Closest pharmacy after that one I'd need a taxi ride.😡

MadBunny profile image
MadBunny in reply to strawclutching

Yep.. Mine used to send a text when meds were ready but no longer do. I called in just now to be told they don't have my inhaler so have had to make the trip to the gp surgery to request a different one . 3rd time in a row! I know supply issues arent their fault but it would have been nice to know. I'd phone them first but they rarely answer.

strawclutching profile image
strawclutching in reply to MadBunny

Same here! They're snappy & in a hurry on the phone already. I was told 'we have over 1,000 patients on our books, we can't be expected to contact all of them.' But maybe not all of them are depending on vital meds they don't have in stock. And the government wants pharmacies to take on more prescribing roles to take the stress off our dwindling no. of GP's leaving the service for the private sector.😡

MadBunny profile image
MadBunny in reply to strawclutching

Its a sad reflection on how the health service is going. Whenever I go in there, there are always several people having problems with getting meds.

fangrock profile image

I’ve never heard of this

Knit12 profile image
Knit12 in reply to fangrock

a community pharmacy is your local chemist

fangrock profile image
fangrock in reply to Knit12

Ah. Ok thanks. I have heard of that! I’m

Mrspainting48 profile image

I would not feel reassured

Ajay575 profile image

Sorry to say in our area the pharmacy's Are getting really bad and some a disgrace

Not sure if wide spread something going on

Service getting worse and worse

Prescription never ready always seem to order some when going to collect even giveing them at least 10 days

Stopped collecting Prescription now after 10

Even minor elements can be a struggle

Say 1 /6 not to bad in our area

Could be very valueble too

MadBunny profile image
MadBunny in reply to Ajay575

The one I use is really bad but from what friends tell me I'm not sure any of the others are better. I think it might be a nationwide problem.

Ajay575 profile image
Ajay575 in reply to MadBunny

Yeh Getting worse

Sometimes our locals even boots shut for upto 2 hours diner time

My collections stoped and prescription service

Dontget me wrong

Years ago they where great service in my area the lot of them really good

Every presriptions now i have issiues every time and i give them longer too

Im going back to basics

Collect prescription then hand it in myself

MadBunny profile image
MadBunny in reply to Ajay575

Today I managed to get them to put aside an alterntive inhaler for me while I rushed up to the GP to request a prescription. Not the first time its happened. Thankfully they are very understanding. And I'm lucky that I don't have far to go.

Rachmaninov2 profile image
Rachmaninov2 in reply to MadBunny

Sorry that yours is really bad MadBunny, I’m lucky that mine are very good.

MadBunny profile image
MadBunny in reply to Rachmaninov2

Mine was very good up to about a year ago. I think they are now part of a group, which has a distribution hub- it would appear that's partly where the problem lies. Plus there has been a large staff turnover. There's a new pharmacist now and she seems to be getting on top of things.

Rachmaninov2 profile image
Rachmaninov2 in reply to MadBunny

Hoping that she improves the situation as soon as possible.

Bobbarge profile image

We’re always arguing with our chemist as are most customers, usually about having to wait even though you’ve rung through and on arrival you’re the only customer, definitely not someone I’d like to confide in

Gymcactus profile image

My village pharmacy is very good and it would be a great help if they provided more services. I always have flu vaccine at the pharmacy and they do BP checks and never have any problems getting my meds, they are most helpful if you have a problem.

KittyJ profile image

Announced today Lloyds aren’t going to be in Sainsburys much longer. Hopefully it’ll be taken other by another pharmacy.


Rachmaninov2 profile image

Do you mean our local pharmacy or are Community Pharmacy something new?

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to Rachmaninov2

seems to be a new name for your local pharmacy, in the community.

Rachmaninov2 profile image
Rachmaninov2 in reply to KittyJ

Oh, thanks. I did wonder.

My pharmacist is very helpful when I have a question about a particular medication. They order my prescriptions from the GP and deliver to me. I have full confidence in them. If they carried out blood tests I would be happy as at the moment I have to collect a blood test form from the GP, take it to my local hospital and wait (no appointment system) up to an hour to be seen.

Rachmaninov2 profile image
Rachmaninov2 in reply to Rachmaninov2

My pharmacist had left an item off my prescription by mistake and just after I got home from picking up the prescription he arrived with said medication. I hadn’t had time to open the bag so didn’t even know there was anything missing. To say that I was surprised is an understatement,

Knit12 profile image

unfortunately going to a local pharmacy when you are immunocompromised is a waste of time in Scotland as they cannot do anything for you. You must go and see a GP or call NHS 24 at the weekend. This has happened to me frequently as my RA meds cause urine infections. I also cannot use them for repeat prescriptions as my meds change frequently. I wouldn’t want to go to them for BP checks as the place is always mobbed and there is no privacy

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to Knit12

in England pharmacies have a consultation room, when I worked in one we had to find the space for one. This was a few years ago now.

Beadie profile image
Beadie in reply to KittyJ

Unfortunately ours is rarely used for medication questions as not enough Pharmacists, but used mainly for methadone giving!! I wouldn't use a pharmacy other than for repeat prescriptions these days.

J1707- profile image
J1707- in reply to KittyJ

unfortunately they don’t use them they just shout and ver the counter for all to here. They are too busy to stop what they are doing

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to J1707-

that’s bad, luckily I’ve not experienced that 😞

Beadie profile image

I've tried 5 local pharmacy's and all failed me, 3 on my repeat prescriptions and two about when I had itchy and painful little red lumps on my scalp and forehead, ( only went to pharmacies becos no available GP appointments available all week!!!!!) I asked if it was shingles and I was told no I was allergic to something take antihistamines, next morning I went to local hospital minor injuries as it was really quite painful and one big blister right by my eye, saw a Dr and yes it was shingles, and quite bad too. Put on meds and felt much better after about 4 days. He did ask which pharmacies I went to aswell!! So not all are helpful.

Essexmelon profile image
Essexmelon in reply to Beadie

Similar experience to you. Painful rash on arm, I thought maybe insect bites. After couple of days went to pharmacy who advised was just a rash and gave me antihistamine cream. Didn't work. Went to GP who confirmed Shingles and panicked because reception full of pregnant women! It was too late for me to get any treatment so just fought off the problem. Before I was diagnosed with RA so not on any meds at that time.

Beadie profile image
Beadie in reply to Essexmelon

Reading some of the other responses on this subject your very fortunate if you have an excellent pharmacy, more don't have that unfortunately , a lot aren't interested, a friends pharmacy told her he's not paid enough to give advice so there you go. Sad world isn't it?

Alderess profile image

I am not aware of community pharmacy at all

Jane19 profile image

Have actually had a very good if not excellent service and help from my local pharmacy. When prescribed an antibiotic for a uti and after checking twice that l could use this one with Methotrexate and GP said yes , the pharmacist said absolutely not on going to collect. And even though they the local pharmacist don’t dispense my imraldi, they are more aware of this medication than my GP .

Couldn’t get a flu jab last year before end of October with GP practice but easily able to book into local pharmacies. in September.

Recently had BP checked in Pharmacy after being asked to book one in for my GP practice and nothing available for 2 weeks, pharmacist able to do one that same day and send results to Gp .

If mine did blood tests l would go there for them as well, but l truly do think in the case of uti and confirmation that you have one ( since they could test ) that the pharmacist could prescribe the relevant antibiotic.

RAGuy profile image

I use my local pharmacy all the time and they are invaluable. They order my repeat meds for me and if I could not fetch them would deliver them. They check if any over-the-counter meds suit me and can be taken with my prescription drugs. They also provide a BP check service but I now have my own device (they are very reasonably priced now).

Most of all and best of all they are excellent, friendly people :)

I am lucky to have them

JEM95 profile image

just out of interest, how long does your pharmacy require to prepare repeat prescriptions?

Mine requires 10 working days from when the request is approved by the surgery.

There is always at least a 20 minute queue (I just think of all those germs flying around) and it takes at least 3 visits as my meds are seldom ready. They don’t order in the Metoject pens until I attempt to collect them the first time.

I have also been dispensed Edoxaban instead of Etoricoxib three times in 5 visits.

Is it as bad as this elsewhere in the country?

Ajay575 profile image
Ajay575 in reply to JEM95

Worse in my area

Mmrr profile image

The community pharmacy in my wee village is excellent at recommending solutions for minor ailments or pointing me in the right direction. A very underused service.

Susiequest profile image

would not ask about rheumatology problems as sometimes even gp can’t answer.

Essexmelon profile image

My grandfather and my father were community pharmacists. Excellent on medicines, often had to correct the GP for incorrect dose on prescriptions - even for babies! But I wouldn't let either of them near me with a needle!

Sohmui profile image
Sohmui in reply to Essexmelon

This made me smile. I had the flu jab from my local pharmacist because I couldn't get an appointment with GP. It was fine!

Leics profile image

My community pharmacy only provide non RA prescription items. I cannot get my methotrexate injections from them I wish I could. To be honest if I’ve asked them a question they’re too rushed and don’t have time or can’t be bothered to answer. They seem to be as clueless about rheumatoid arthritis and their treatments as my GP. The pharmacy in my village I will not use as they’ve given my prescription to neighbours which I asked them not to do and that was because they didn’t deliver them when they said they would so I wasn’t in as I was working at that time . When my GP made an error prescribing oramorph the pharmacy insisted it was correct which technically it was but 10x the dose I should have had, it’s a good job I had listened to how much I was supposed to take because eventually the GP rang me in an awful panic because of the mistake. The chemists I use now are very good and deliver my prophylactic antibiotics but they’re in the next village so I couldn’t collect them.

Garnacha profile image

Love my local chemist (community pharmacy if that's the name) always helpful, friendly & excellent when asking for advice, I order my repeat prescriptions via an app & is usually ready within 3 - 5 days, only once they didn't give me the correct amount of prednisolone but, since being diagnosed in 2020 are my go to for any advice. Had a really bad experience with Boots pharmacy last year where they gave me antibiotics instead of sulfasalazine & saw a number of people going back as they'd been given the wrong prescription so will never use them again.

Sohmui profile image

Pharmacists, however well qualified to take on the extra work, may soon become overwhelmed as, we are told, are the GPs. So is it merely shifting the burden? Pharmacists themselves worry about this. Moreover, efficient communication between primary care and consultant is sometimes lacking. To involve a third party in a procedure that may be relevant, even vital, to specialist care may not improve this.

Rachmaninov2 profile image
Rachmaninov2 in reply to Sohmui

You make some very good points, are pharmacists equipped to take on this extra work? Perhaps the more people communicating with each other could end up being detrimental to the patient i.e. potential communication break down.

Sohmui profile image
Sohmui in reply to Rachmaninov2

Exactly, Rachmaninov2.

Marienan profile image

I've always used my community pharmacy for years now. It's local easy to get to and very useful to me and my family I will continue to use as long as I live in this area.

Sazzybee profile image

I think it would be a bad idea I think Pharmacy are over work and rush off there feet the one near me are always busy I go there for my flu jab my prescriptions monthly they are very busy with prescriptions that come in always .But I can go in with health Question they always make time for you. So why spend more money on Community Pharmacy where you will still have Problems . other Pharmacy have like can’t get hold of certain medication to give to patients.

madme1 profile image

Sorry but what is meant by Community Pharmacy please?

Sohmui profile image
Sohmui in reply to madme1

They mean your local chemist.

madme1 profile image
madme1 in reply to Sohmui

Sohmui, I thought that but just wasn't sure.

Sohmui profile image
Sohmui in reply to madme1

You're not alone. Was the name changed to suit the government's plan? Someone with nothing better to do at a time when so much needs to be done.

madme1 profile image
madme1 in reply to Sohmui

I wouldn't know we just know by chemist or by the owners surname.

gilox profile image

not heard of this!

dmags profile image

Did not know buythat name until I read the comments

ageddancer profile image

My local pharmacy is so overworked that you cannot expect them to help by stopping to talk. When you go to collect your prescription you have to wait in a long line of people (with colds, sniffles, coughs etc) even when they have phoned to say its ready. I visited another in a distant town and she said I needed something but my own GP disagreed.....so whats the point. Norfolk area

Shambles10944 profile image

camera for go down the throat

Granzister profile image

have never heard of them.

Morganalefaye profile image

Never heard of them!

oldtimer2 profile image

My pharmacy is incredibly busy. It moved into larger premises about four years ago because of the demand and to give people a private consultation room. I don't see how they could safely or efficently do any more without more staff, more room, more funding.

They supply my Imraldi (adalumimab) injections, not mentioned above, and used to supply my methotrexate injections when I was on them.

Rupert2001 profile image

I don’t think community pharmacists have sufficient experience of immunosuppressant medication used in many rheumatological illnesses nowadays for me to ask them for advice. They have enough to do in advising patients with minor illnesses/ advising customers whether they need to make a GP appointment etc. in addition to checking prescriptions, and advising patients how to take their medications.

Bella59 profile image

Local pharmacy is always extremely busy.I worked in one over Twelve years ago and it was busy then.Since then more and more houses have been built.So more prescriptions,plus repeat ones.Then you have dosette boxes made up for older clients.We had consultation room where methodone was dispensed.Anyone can ask to speak to pharmacist privately for help or advice in this room.If items are out of stock it is not the staff to blame.Sometimes the manufacturer cannot supply the item required due to shortage or other reasons.My pharmacy texts when my prescriptions are ready.I think more work is being passed onto a pharmacist when they are already working flat out.

Cannes4me profile image

I use them for my medications and I have requested to speak with them privately and found them very helpful.

madme1 profile image

My community pharmacy had really long queues during covid. You could not get through on the phone, there were not enough staff, the consultation room is just a cubicle inside that is not really private. They sometimes send people home, even young children as they still may not have the supply of meds available. I felt really sorry for the staff who tried so hard to cope, some of them were in tears and that is still happening.

Hollyhock123 profile image
Hollyhock123 in reply to madme1

Unfortunately, this is still a common thing for us

Hollyhock123 profile image

unfortunately I live in an area struggling with retention of pharmacists. Ours, plus other pharmacies in our coastal area are surviving on relief pharmacists. So our local boots run pharmacy, with shop, is often closed or on reduced hours as they can’t open without a pharmacist on site. So when they are open, the over stretched staff are catching up on the backlog of prescriptions. Hardly any time for other services, plus, most weeks we only know that morning what opening hours maybe. I can’t recall the last time they were open on a Saturday. Very frustrating for so many of the community as we are rural and many have to make a deliberate trip only to find it closed. We have a 10 day repeat prescription turn around as normal now. I also have to take my methoject sharps bins back to a different pharmacy as they can’t accept them, although I collect new ones from them. For travel clinic, our nearest one is 1hr away, and then they didn’t have stock so had to make another return appointment.

madme1 profile image
madme1 in reply to Hollyhock123

That's the problem we had, no Manager so they couldn't open. Now we do have one and I know I'm not alone in begging her stay as she goes above and beyond.

madme1 profile image
madme1 in reply to madme1

I'm lucky in the fact that the chemist is only 5 mins away by car, but if I had to walk even that would take some time and there's a chance that I wouldn't make it even then! We are hoping to move to North Wales soon, been waiting almost a year and living out of boxes. I've done my homework already, checking out where local pharmacy doctors and hospital, dentist etc are so like the Girl Guides I'm going prepped and ready!

Horse_and_hound profile image

If none of the above apply, you can't vote.

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to Horse_and_hound

but that’s ok, if none apply then you don’t need to vote in this poll 😊

lolamylo profile image

I live in a rural area, therefore would have to make at least a 10-20 mile round trip dependent on pharmacy location. My GP surgery is in my village, so is easier to visit. I do see for those in more populated areas this may be a valuable resource. For information, it would be good if online face-to-face consultations were offered. I can forsee that Pharmacist's would soon be overwhelmed and difficult to consult just as GP's and hospitals are at present.

Lyndylou34 profile image

I generally use my local Tesco store to collect prescriptions and occasionally ask advice. The community pharmacy attached to my surgery is really too small to be of use.

Feelingpoorly profile image

My local pharmacy is always so busy they never seem to have any time . Also I would question the extent of their medical knowledge beyond simple colds and flu.

Pearce1940oscar profile image

I was a medical receptionist and our pharmacy was attached to the drs building and often the pharmacist there would com round to me with a prescription and say take this drug cannot be used with whatever other drug was on the script and I would have to go to the doctor who had written it out and get him to look in his book containing the medications and find another drug so I feel that most pharmacists know more about the drugs we take than the drs

nomoreheels profile image

None apply to me as I use an independent Pharmacy. The main reasons being the Pharmacy within the same building as my GP Practice, one of 2 Practices in the relatively new building, is always busy & don't deliver. With my h & I our monthly repeat meds fill a large carrier bag each & the Pharmacy we use are more than happy to deliver them Mon - Fri, even if for whatever reason it's only a one med prescription. Usually though if that's the case we will collect it & are more than happy to as we feel it's not cost effective for the Pharmacy to deliver unless they happen to be in our area.

AnnieJ123 profile image

Since lockdown GP pharmacies have been useful. I occasionally ask my local pharmacy questions about any symptom not necessarily related to my RA. They used to order repeat prescriptions but we now do this on line through patient access and collect from the pharmacy. My GP rarely sees me face to face but I do get a telephone reply. The GP practice used to do blood tests and BP tests but I now have to go the the hospital for bloods and it is now hard to get access to results. Before lockdown they were posted on patient access but now they say these are on separate IT systems. We are expected to check our own BP and phone the surgery with readings. It seems to me that GP practices are doing everything on line and handing more over to the pharmacy. The pharmacy gives Covid injections. Would they give Benepali injections if asked ? I am about to start Benepali. Expecting a delivery next week and seeing the nurse the week after. Feeling apprehensive of doing this myself but once shown will have to get on with it.

eastbournelady profile image

I think you may be asking wrong questions -the community pharmacy attached to my drs is a 45min bus journey away with the walk to and from bus stop only manageable on some days I would be happy to use it if it was nearer, the same brand pharmacy delivers my prescriptions as we no longer have a car, that is a few miles down the road, so now i dont visit them either. The only local pharmacy is a too busy small boots which never had drugs in, always had part order missing and didnt deliver free. So i dont really think community pharmacy is the way to go for blood tests and pressures. (Dr used to always take BP but of course you dont get to see them now and if digital one doesnt work the HCAs dont know how to use old style one.)

Otto11 profile image

I havnt heard of them so no I dont use them.

BrightonDiva profile image

I also don't know what is meant by the term 'Community Pharmacy'. Can you define this please

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to BrightonDiva

pharmacy in the community

orange33 profile image

I think our pharmacy is far too small for any consultations to take place. They are always extremely busy and with an expanding village I can’t see how that could work.

AnnieJ123 profile image

Firstly ,please can someone confirm whether a community pharmacy is one attached to the GP practice or any local pharmacy fairly nearby ? I am fortunate to have several nearby within a two mile radius and one attached to the GP practice. Secondly I read from replies that some community pharmacists give methotrexate injections others do not. Does anyone have a benepali or similar injections given by their community pharmacist instead of doing them themselves ? Many thanks.

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to AnnieJ123

I think people mean they collect their mtx from their pharmacy that’s what I did. They don’t give the injection.

AnnieJ123 profile image
AnnieJ123 in reply to KittyJ

Tank you Kitty. You are a great help. Best Wishes.

AnnieJ123 profile image
AnnieJ123 in reply to AnnieJ123

Thank sorry.

KASHMIRI1 profile image

Our community pharmacy have been great in the past but as things have become very busy they are always rushed of there feet and things are out of stock. Currently waiting for a pred prescription from them it's over a week now, luckily l have a small supply. The best thing is that they deliver our prescriptions for free and are always very pleasant despite being so busy

Gnarli profile image

My pharmacy is always very busy but has a lovely dispensing assistant. Frequently out of medications but that seems par for the course. No service on a Saturday or between 13.00 and 14.00. But do flu jabs rather than visit the GP. They are selling out to one of the big chains soon and I dread to think what will happen.