This week is national Ask Your Pharmacist Week which aims to raise awareness of the variety of NHS services on offer at local pharmacies.

Pharmacists are experts in the use of medicines, managing minor illnesses and providing free and confidential health and wellbeing advice.

Community Pharmacies are an integral part of the NHS family and the range of clinical services provided by community pharmacies has expanded significantly in recent years with several more clinical services having come on stream in 2021.

Alison Rogers, pharmacy integration lead for NHS Herefordshire and Worces– tershire said: “People’s positive experience of community pharmacy during the Covid-19 pandemic has raised expectations of what local pharmacies can offer them.

‘‘We want people to be more aware of long-standing and new NHS services plus the skills and expertise on offer in pharmacies across the UK.

‘‘Things have been changing at your local pharmacy, including the introduction of a range of new NHS services. Already you can benefit from prompt advice and treatment for minor illnesses, support for healthy living and medicines advice to help you manage your long term medical conditions.

“Many pharmacies now also check blood pressure and provide NHS vaccinations including flu jabs, but services that help you to understand new medication you have been prescribed and how to use it to best effect have also been expanded.

“Don’t miss out on NHS health care available conveniently and close to home, in your local pharmacy.”

You can visit your local pharmacy to discuss taking new medicines and receive advice on changes to your prescribed medication after leaving hospital.

Ask Your Pharmacist Week encourages the public to visit their local pharmacy for:

Advice and treatment for minor illnesses such as colds, earaches, itchy skin and eye infections.

Advice on staying well, preventing disease and stocking a safe medicines cabinet.

Support to maintain good sexual health.

Advice on stopping smoking.

Personalised support on managing medicines day to day and how to get the most benefit from your medicines.

NHS Community Pharmacy teams work alongside other health professionals to provide the best possible care as part of the wider healthcare system.

So if you need NHS services, convenient access to advice and supply of medicines, support for healthy living and prompt clinical advice – Ask Your Pharmacist!