HALESOWEN MP James Morris visited a town centre pharmacy which is helping ease the pressure on GP practices.

Halesowen Pharmacy on Peckingham Street, is one of many pharmacies that are now part of the ‘Pharmacy First’ scheme launched last month.

With Pharmacy First, pharmacists can prescribe treatment for seven conditions, including earache, sore throats and infected insect bites, without the need to wait for an appointment with their GP.

James met with Pharmacy Manager Sanj Singh and other staff, to learn about the new services they are providing and the benefit it has brought for local people.

James said: "Whilst we’ve made great progress in tackling the NHS backlogs since the pandemic, I know that for some there is still a lengthy wait for a GP appointment, and therefore anything we can do to relieve the pressure is vital.

“It was great to visit Halesowen Pharmacy recently, and speak to the team about how Pharmacy First is helping people receive faster treatment. I’d encourage NHS patients to use Pharmacy First wherever possible, both for their benefit and to ensure we can reserve GP appointments for those who really need one.”

Sanj Singh, Manager of Halesowen Pharmacy, said: "Pharmacy First is a new service available via Community pharmacies utilising the clinical skills of Pharmacists in our health service.

"Treating patients for seven common conditions including sore throat, middle ear infections, shingles, sinusitis, infected bites/stings, impetigo and urinary infections resulting in quicker health outcomes and reduced demand for GP appointments.

“We at Halesowen Pharmacy welcome the new opportunities given to the Pharmacy sector and would encourage the future investment in the industry to help utilise Pharmacist's expertise further and help the NHS tackle the challenges it faces while also supporting current essential services such as dispensing."