You, your pharmacy and Coronavirus

Responding to people's concerns about medication, Swindon and Wiltshire's Chief Officer of Community Pharmacy has created a list of frequently asked questions and the answers to these. Find out more.
inforgraphic of a bottle of medication

Your questions answered

Why are we having to queue outside and only be let in one at a time?

  • Many pharmacies are relatively small confined spaces.
  • To maintain consistent 2m (15minutes) or 1m (short interaction) distancing, waiting customers and patients may be asked to wait outside.
  • This is for the protection of both customers and staff.

What happens if a pharmacy closes?

  • A pharmacy may have to close at short notice, for example if the only pharmacist on site takes ill.
  • All efforts will be made to re-open as soon as possible, however this can take time to identify alternative staff and travel time.
  • If longer term closures (more than a few hours/rest of the day), become necessary patients will be directed to another pharmacy or alternative arrangements made for supply of medicines held for patients in the pharmacy. There are people who have the job of co-ordinating all that needs to go on behind the scenes to arrange this.

What is happening to the price of paracetamol etc?

  • Where there is a sudden increase in demand for something, prices do tend to rise. This can be due to the need to change supply routes and increase manufacturing capacity.  Pharmacies are already seeing increased wholesale prices and unfortunately will need to pass these on.
  • Profiteering can never be supported and any instances reported will be investigated by our regulator the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC).

Why can’t I have 3 months supply/order my prescription medicines early

  • Supplying increased quantities etc will cause the same problems with medicines that we have seen with toilet roll.
  • There is no shortage, but one will be created by changes in supply patterns. If you run out of toilet roll, while someone else is hoarding, you can have a shower or use a washable facecloth. 
  • If you stock up on the lifesaving medicines you need, someone else will suffer.

if you have symptoms, or have been in contact with someone with symptoms please stay at home and make sure you don't go to the pharmacy. 

Information about Coronavirus

If you think you or loved ones have the Coronavirus and you're not sure what to do we have put together important information based on advice and information from NHS England and Public Health England.

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