Robin Walker MP has endorsed the Government’s new efforts to ensure the better use of community pharmacies.

The Pharmacy First scheme has recently been launched in Herefordshire and Worcestershire, allowing quicker access to care for patients.

Under this initiative, pharmacies will function more efficiently, facilitating urgent medical assistance without long wait-times for GP appointments.


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Around 114 pharmacies in the counties have adopted the scheme, with the ability to treat seven commonplace health conditions such as sinusitis, earache, shingles and uncomplicated urinary tract infections in women.

The patients no longer require a GP consultation or a prescription as their pharmacists can readily distribute prescription-only medicines.

Pharmacy First will not only accelerate patient access to crucial care, but it will also alleviate community GP services by directing patients to more appropriate treatment locations.

Supported by nearly £645 million, this approach is opted by 95 per cent of pharmacies across England, allowing immediate care to patients without relying on a GP meeting.

Furthermore, the initiative collaborates with the solutions in the Primary Care Recovery Plan, such as alleviating the 8am rush with new digital tools and extra GP staff.

Collectively, these efforts aim to spare 10 million GP appointments a year by the winter, catering to the public with more choices for accessing care.

MP for Worcester, Mr Walker, said: "The pandemic put huge pressure on our NHS services here in Worcester and as we continue with our recovery, it is essential that patients receive the care they need quickly and easily.

"That is why I am delighted that the Conservative Government has launched the Pharmacy First approach.

"We are sticking with the plan to improve access to care and cut NHS waiting lists, delivering on the Prime Minister’s priority so that that everyone can access the treatment they need."

Health and social care Secretary, Victoria Atkins MP said: "I’m determined to deliver faster, simpler, fairer access to care for patients, and the expansion of Pharmacy First will mean patients can get treatment for common conditions without needing to see their GP first."