14 November 2014: The government announced that a further £300m is being invested to help the NHS in England deal with winter pressures this year. As part of the announcement, patients are being encouraged to make more use of pharmacists and seek early advice from them. The Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) featured on a number of news outlets speaking about this story, including Good Morning Britain, Sky News and LBC.
Speaking to Sky News, RPS member Chris Howland-Harris said: “Every pharmacist that you speak to has had at least five years training, and so we have a good understanding of what is a minor or common ailment that we can support you [to treat yourself] or what is perhaps something that requires further investigation. If you start describing to us symptoms that we think need to be checked by your doctor, then we’ll advise that you go and see your GP or, if it’s more urgent, we’ll refer you to emergency services.”