NHS experts urge residents to 'order prescriptions early' ahead of Christmas pharmacy closures
Shropshire's medical experts are urging residents to order their prescriptions early to cope with pharmacy closures over Christmas.
With the festive season fast approaching, health and care experts at NHS Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin are urging residents to enjoy the Christmas period in good health by making sure they have enough of the medication they need by ordering prescriptions early.
Some pharmacies and GP practices will close over the Bank Holidays, so patients are being asked to check their supply and order 14 days before they are due to run out.
This year, the bank holidays fall on Monday, December 25, Tuesday, December 26 and Monday, January 1.
Dr Nick White, chief medical officer at NHS Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, is urging residents not to leave it too late.
He said: “If you rely on medication for long-term conditions - don’t leave it too late to order your repeat prescriptions for the festive period.
"Start thinking about this now and get your orders in, it’s always better to be prepared. It saves you time, minimises delay and ensures you can pick up your medicine from the nearest pharmacy.
“Running out of medicine can have serious consequences for some patients and have a knock-on effect on other health services, as people may turn to A&E because they haven’t got the medicines they need. It is important that people plan to pick up repeat prescriptions so they can enjoy the season in good health.”
Pharmacists are also reminding people to check their medicine cabinets to better prepare for self-care and use the 'Think Which Service' to minimise disruption to health services.
Denis Mulcahy, community pharmacist at Green End Pharmacy, Whitchurch, added: “Winter can be a difficult time for health and social care professionals. Demand will be extremely high, and we encourage everyone across Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin to ‘Think Which Service’ to ensure they are seen by the right professional, at the right time, in the right place.
"Pharmacists are here to help with common ailments. We are highly qualified health professionals who offer free, confidential advice and can help you get the right medications for everyday illnesses. By visiting a community pharmacy in the first instance you may also get seen quicker as most of the time you don’t need an appointment.”
The 'Think Which Service' is available online at shropshiretelfordandwrekin.nhs.uk/your-health/think-which-service.
For patients whose GP practice is part of the Prescription Ordering Direct (POD) service, repeat prescriptions can be ordered from home online. Learn more at shropshiretelfordandwrekin.nhs.uk/your-health/where-to-get-advice-and-help/prescription-ordering-service.
For urgent requests, the POD hotline is available on 03333 583 509.