Are you making the most of your local pharmacy?
Pharmacists across Lewisham will be reminding residents about the range of services available in local pharmacies during Ask Your Pharmacist Week this November.
Often, people make unnecessary trips to the GP or even A&E, when the neighbourhood pharmacy could help instead.
In recent years, community pharmacy has expanded its role, and now provides a wide range of clinical and public health services, within easy reach of the people who need them most.
Dr Marc Rowland, a local GP and Chair of NHS Lewisham Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said, ''while most people go to their pharmacy for medicines and medicines advice, many don't know about the range of other healthcare services they offer.
Pharmacists are a uniquely accessible workforce of qualified health professionals who can deliver expert medicines advice and an expanding list of public health services.
They are available without appointment and are able to deal with a wide range of ailments, as well as offering advice on maintaining and improving your health.
People might be surprised at the services pharmacies now offer. This includes personalised medicines advice, help to quit smoking and to maintain good sexual health, treatment for minor ailments and advice on preventing disease.
The majority of pharmacies now have consultation rooms where you can talk with your pharmacist in private and pharmacists are trained to know when a referral to another health care professional is advisable."
The Ask Your Pharmacist initiative, which runs between 9 and 15 November this year and is organised by the National Pharmacy Association, helps keep the public up to speed with what is now on offer on their doorstep in local pharmacies.
To find your nearest pharmacy visit www.nhs.uk/