Boots UK has been providing outpatient pharmacy services at the Royal Derby Hospital in Derby, in partnership with the NHS, since 2010. The Boots pharmacy team provides a dispensing service, as well as expert advice on how outpatients can prevent health conditions and feel more in control of their health. The pharmacy team is committed to providing the very best active care for Royal Derby Hospital patients by providing an efficient dispensing service that saves patients’ time. This allows the Royal Derby Hospital to focus solely on their inpatient dispensing and has meant that outpatient waiting times are on average 15 minutes, which is an improvement on waiting times.

Jessica Fung, Boots UK Pharmacist at Royal Derby Hospital, comments: “Our Boots pharmacy at Royal Derby Hospital provides the best in community pharmacy within a hospital setting. We’re proud to be able to provide customers with a professional dispensing service for their outpatient prescriptions, along with other fantastic health and beauty products that you would expect from Boots – all in one convenient place.”

Royal Derby Boots hospital pharmacy operates in a similar way to Boots UK community-based pharmacies found on the high street, with some slight differences tailored to the specific needs of the hospital. When a patient comes into the pharmacy with their prescription from a clinician, the pharmacists are able to do further clinical checks by looking on the hospital system and seeing whether the patient has any known medical conditions which may affect what is prescribed. The pharmacist can speak to the clinician directly to discuss prescriptions, which means that patients get the very best one-to-one personal patient care and faster prescriptions.

The best people in the right place

The Royal Derby Hospital is the only outpatient hospital pharmacy dispensing location under the Royal Derby Hospitals NHS Trust and some prescriptions can be sent electronically or faxed through directly to the Boots UK pharmacy from other local hospitals. This means that outpatients receive a more efficient and timely service across Derby, as their prescription is ready when they arrive at the Boots UK pharmacy. Boots UK has recruited people to its pharmacy team who have previously worked in hospitals. This helps ensure that the best possible people are in the right position, in the right location, at the right time.

Patients are not the only ones to benefit from the Boots hospital pharmacy service, as hospital staff can drop off their prescription in the morning and have them ready to pick up when they need them, during the pharmacy’s opening times. This provides greater access and convenience. As well as providing a hospital pharmacy, patients and visitors to the Royal Derby Hospital can easily access the Boots UK store which is built around the pharmacy. This means that they can pick up their favourite health and beauty products at the same time, with the same expertise that they can find in a Boots high street store. They can even order products from the wide range available on, through the ‘order-online and collect-in-store service’, which means that outpatients and staff have access to the whole range of Boots products.

The best patient care

Boots UK and the Royal Derby Hospital team share expertise and experience to ensure that they provide the best patient care. There are frequent opportunities for both Boots UK and the Royal Derby Hospital team to shadow each other and take part in lunch and learn sessions.

Boots UK and Royal Derby Hospitals NHS Trust aim to deliver the very best outpatient dispensing services for the local community. Since 2007 we have been working with hospitals to deliver innovative solutions to outpatients. By working together we can support patient care and bridge the transition between hospital and community pharmacy services. From the successful partnership with the Royal Derby Hospitals NHS Trust, we are looking to work with other NHS partnerships to provide more pharmacy dispensing locations in the UK.

Tom Gray, Chief Pharmacist at the Royal Derby Hospital, adds: “Derby Hospitals are very pleased to be delivering outpatient pharmacy services in partnership with Boots UK. We believe that this partnership adds value to our patients’ experience, supports the Trust Pharmacy to deliver other priorities and complements our hospital concourse. Patients and staff receive a courteous, responsive service and access to a range of over the counter medicines, services and professional support. The partnership provides a unique opportunity to redesign services around patient needs, draw on our relevant experience and expertise, develop staff and make best use of available resources.”

Peter Bainbridge is Director of Pharmacy at Boots UK