Convenient Care: 7 Conditions Treated by Pharmacies

Explore expanded pharmacy services: local pharmacists now treat 7 common conditions, offering convenience and expert care for minor health concerns.

Services in community pharmacies are expanding, and your local pharmacist is now able to provide medication for seven common conditions, without needing a GP appointment first. Going to your local pharmacy offers an easy and convenient way to get advice on minor health concerns.

Pharmacists have long been pillars of the communities they serve, and around 40% of pharmacists in England are from multicultural backgrounds. For many families, it’s a profession that has been handed down through the generations or that is shared with spouses.

Yemi Alimi-Omidiora has been a pharmacist for almost 40 years, having qualified in Nigeria. She and her daughter, Funke, work together at their local family pharmacy and Funke is also Deputy Head of Pharmacy at an NHS Trust. Yemi decided that she wanted to be a pharmacist while she was at secondary school.

“I had a friend who was going to study pharmacy at the time, and it inspired me to find out more about the profession. My daughter and I have a shared passion for pharmacy and doing our bit to make the world a better place. It’s wonderful to work alongside each other and to be able to make a difference in our community.”

Over nearly four decades as a community pharmacist, Yemi has seen the profession change and adapt in many ways. The most recent change meaning your pharmacist can now help treat and assess seven conditions, without the need for a GP appointment or prescription.

“As well as changes to the services that we offer as pharmacists, our customers and patients also have more knowledge of medical conditions than they did in the past. They google something, but then they come to us for our expertise, and we make sure they’re getting the right medication and treatments. Giving people the option of seeing us rather than their GP for certain minor conditions allows them a choice of how they want to handle their health concerns.”

Yemi recounts how community pharmacies were often at the forefront of patient care during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how this has changed the way that patients view their role.

“We stayed open to ensure that patient care continued and we were there for our community. Now that we are able to offer even more support and services, such as flu vaccinations and treating common conditions, we’ve taken on a more pivotal role I think. As community pharmacists, we feel able to make a difference and to bring joy and hope to people every day. All of this gives me great career satisfaction, too.”

Olutayo Arikawe has been a pharmacist for over 20 years. She was the National winner of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s ‘I Love My Pharmacist Award’ in 2016. Olutayo and her husband work together at their family owned pharmacy.

“I always wanted to be a pharmacist. I really never had any second choice. It was always pharmacy for me. My only love. I was driven by my passion to help people, and that has continued throughout my life. My husband and I bought our own pharmacy and have been working together ever since, which is great. Like anything, we have different strengths and outlooks, but that makes us a fantastic team. We feel like a central part of the community and I am always touched when people come back to say thank you for how we’ve helped them. It’s my job, but it makes me so happy.”

Like Yemi, Olutayo has seen a lot change over the years that she has been a pharmacist, and she welcomes this development of the profession and the services they can offer.

“Electronic prescriptions have made such a difference. It’s hard to even imagine now going to a surgery to pick up your prescription, the pharmacist typing everything in manually. My younger staff can’t get their heads around it! It gives us more time to focus on our patients and the new services are great. People can sometimes feel more comfortable seeing a pharmacist about these sorts of issues as they know and trust us. These changes and the relationships that we have across the community are giving patients more choices and better access to the care they need.”

Remember, your local pharmacist can now help treat and assess these seven conditions, without the need for a GP appointment or prescription:

  • Sinusitis in those aged 12 years and over
  • Sore throat in those aged 5 years and over
  • Earache in those between 1 and 17 years old
  • Infected insect bite 
  • Impetigo
  • Shingles in those over 18 years old
  • Uncomplicated urinary tract infections (UTIs) in women aged 16-64​

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