NHS Pharmacy First Scotland (PFS), which recently hit its second anniversary, has completed more than three million consultations since launching.

Community Pharmacy Scotland (CPS) said the milestone was ‘a massive achievement for our network, especially considering the huge pressures our pharmacy teams are currently experiencing’.

CPS will celebrate the Pharmacy First second anniversary by hosting a Q&A across its social media channels on 11 August at 7.30pm.

It said: ‘As NHS PFS grows and develops into the future – with new PGDs and other additions implemented, Community Pharmacy Scotland will be there to communicate and support pharmacy owners and their teams as they adapt to these changes.'

NHS Pharmacy First Scotland, a service which provides advice for minor illnesses, was launched in all community pharmacies across Scotland in 2020.

The service replaced the existing minor ailments service, delivered by community pharmacies in the devolved nations since 2006.

It was intended to make community pharmacies the first point of contact for people with a wide variety of minor health problems and long-term conditions who need medical advice, as well as reduce demands on doctors and A&E services.

Pharmacy minister Maria Caulfield confirmed earlier this year that the Government was working on creating a national pharmacy minor ailments service in England.

Campbell Thomson, area manager of M and D Green Group, said: ‘Pharmacy First being open and available to all has been a huge advantage. Being able to offer the same standard of care to nearly everyone has streamlined our process.’

Richard Mackie, who runs T.N. Crosby Chemist in Hawick, added: ‘We are finding the Pharmacy First service excellent. Having not only a national service, but a publicised one has helped a great deal with public knowledge and ongoing/increased uptake. Particularly as other medical establishments are now aware of it and often send people our way – opticians, for example.’