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The pharmacy is an accessible health resource for you and your family. Everyone can get advice from a pharmacist and buy medicine for a minor ailment or illness.
Many pharmacies are open when your GP surgery is shut (evenings, weekends and on public holidays). You don't even need to make an appointment to speak to a pharmacist.
A pharmacist provides lots of services and can help if:
There is a service, available from every pharmacy in Scotland, called the NHS Minor Ailment service.
Minor ailments or illnesses, which can be treated include:
Even if you are not eligible for this service the pharmacist will be able to provide you with advice on any of the ailments/illnesses listed above.
If the pharmacist is not able to help, your GP is closed, and they feel they can refer you to an out of hours doctor without you having to call NHS 24.
You can find out more about the NHS Minor Ailment Service on the Scottish Government website.
If you are registered with a GP in Scotland, any community pharmacist can in certain circumstances under the NHS provide you with a supply of your regular repeat medication. This is at the discretion of the pharmacist and should only be in one off situations.
There are some medicines that the pharmacist is not allowed to supply and this service can not be used to obtain a supply of methadone or any other substitution therapy.
If you are on holiday from another part of the UK, or your regular pharmacy is closed a pharmacist can still make an emergency supply of your usual medicines.
If you are visiting from overseas, or you are not registered with a GP in the UK you need to contact a local surgery. You can find your nearest GP on NHS inform's National Service Directory or by calling NHS inform on 0800 22 44 88 (8am to 10pm, 7 days)
However, you should remember:
Pharmacists are experts about medicines, so any questions you have about your medicines and prescriptions can be answered by a pharmacist.