Worried about pharmacy closures? Time to consider EPS
As many people will have noticed when walking down their local high street, a vast number of community pharmacies are closing down. In fact, in late 2017 an analysis of NHS data by PharmData suggested that as many as 2,700 community pharmacies could be at risk of closure in the near future because they have become financially unviable.
To examine just how far-reaching this issue is, and to reveal the impact this is having on the general public, Pharmacy Outlet recently commissioned an independent survey among more than 2,000 UK adults.
The research, which has been featured in the Sunday Express and Pharmacy Business, found that 11% of people have seen their nearest pharmacy close in the past 12 months. Furthermore, for 43% of respondents, having to go to the next nearest pharmacy would take at least an additional 15 minutes of travel time.
In total, just 70% of the country’s population say they are within walking distance of their nearest pharmacy – well below the Government’s reported 95%.
Unsurprisingly given the vital healthcare services and advice they offer, the closure of pharmacies is a cause for concern among many people. Almost two fifths (38%) of UK adults fear pharmacy closures will negatively impact their health, making it harder to access the advice, medication and prescriptions they need. Meanwhile, 32% say they have already been left without their repeat prescriptions because they cannot find the time to go between their GP and pharmacist.
The research underlines the value and importance of the Electronic Prescription Service (EPS). Allowing patients to have repeat prescriptions delivered straight to their door, with no extra cost, EPS is an important new digital initiative making healthcare more accessible to the general public.
As pharmacies face the risk of closure, the UK public must ensure that they are well-positioned to receive the vital medical support and healthcare services they need. EPS is one such method for making sure that is the case – it solves issues about being too busy or too far away from a physical pharmacy to pick up a prescription, offering a much easier way of getting repeat medication delivered to a chosen address. It saves both the patient and the NHS time and money!
To find out more about EPS, or to register to have your repeated prescription delivered straight to your home through Pharmacy Outlet’s EPS service, click here.