What is Pharmacy First Scotland?
NHS Pharmacy First Scotland is an NHS service provided by your local community pharmacy (a pharmacy with a contract to provide NHS prescriptions and services).
If you have a minor illness, a pharmacy is the first place you should go for advice.
You do not usually need an appointment and you can go to any pharmacy.
Your pharmacist can give you advice for a minor illness and medicine if they think you need it.
Who is the service for?
You can use the NHS Pharmacy First Scotland if you are registered with a GP practice in Scotland or you live in Scotland. Speak to the pharmacy team if you need further details.
How does the service work?
Pharmacists and their teams are experts in medicines and can help with minor health concerns.
Pharmacists like GPs can only provide certain medicines on the NHS. All of these are proven to be effective for treating your condition. If you want a specific medicine or product you may have to buy it. The pharmacist will give you advice on this.
If the pharmacist thinks it is better for you to see your GP, they may refer you directly or tell you to make an appointment.
How do I use the service?
NHS Pharmacy First is available from all pharmacies in Scotland that dispense NHS prescriptions. You can choose which pharmacy to use. In most instances you do not need to make an appointment.
When you visit the pharmacy, the pharmacist (or one of their team) will ask you for some information, including your name, date of birth and postcode.
The pharmacist will:
- ask you about your symptoms
- give you advice on your condition
- provide medication (if you need it)
- refer you to another healthcare professional (such as your GP) if they think this is necessary
- They will set up a Patient Medication Record to make a note of any advice and treatment they give you
- You can ask to use the pharmacy’s consulting area or room if you want to speak to the pharmacist in private