Wealden MP Nus Ghani is to raise concern about Government cuts to pharmacy funding and the possible closure of 3,000 pharmacies after receiving a petition from more than 1,000 constituents.
The MP visited Kamsons Pharmacy in Bell Farm Road, Uckfield, last week to learn more about the concerns. She spent an hour meeting manager Conor Clancy and the rest of the team there.
Free delivery service
She learned about the different services provided and the free delivery service of medicines that Kamsons provides six days a week throughout Uckfield, Buxted, Maresfield, Nutley, Hailsham and surrounding areas.
She said: “The fact that over 100 patients per day receive their medicines delivered free of charge by their local pharmacy, at no cost to the patient or the NHS is a real positive for our local area.
“The possible impact of changes to pharmacy funding on the rural communities of Wealden is a cause for concern and I will be speaking to the Minister about this.”
Nus was shown a paper saying that nationally pharmacies contributed £3 billion to the NHS, public sector and wider society in England in 2015 through just 12 services.
She was told this meant that pharmacies delivered substantially more in benefits than they received in compensation, providing excellent value to their local communities.
The study, carried out by accountancy company PwC, looked at 12 key pharmacy services including managing drug shortages and offering advice on minor ailments.
Kamsons pharmacist Conor Clancy said: “I am pleased that Nus took the time to come and see all of the things we do such as free accessible healthcare advice, free deliveries and services to substance misusers.”
While at the pharmacy Nus took the opportunity to have a flu vaccination after hearing how serious flu could be and that vaccination was the best form of protection.
Kamsons is offering free NHS flu vaccinations to anyone over 65 and to adults in certain groups such as diabetics, those with severe asthma, unpaid carers and pregnant women.
No appointment is necessary and normally you can just walk in and receive one between 9am and 6.30pm each week day.
For those not eligible for a free NHS vaccine, a vaccination can be given for £10.