The Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) is calling for further expansion of the healthy living pharmacy model to help support community health and well-being. Healthy living pharmacies deliver commissioned services in areas such as smoking cessation, sexual health, weight management and long-term conditions.    

The call is backed by a recent survey that shows the public are comfortable receiving a wide range of services and advice from their local community pharmacy, including:

  • Health checks (78%) including blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose level
  • Information on other healthcare services (78%) including where they can be accessed
  • Treatment of minor ailments (76%) including minor injuries, skin conditions, bug and viruses
  • Vaccinations (71%) such as flu and Hep B
  • Advice on managing long-term conditions (70%) such as diabetes and asthma
  • Stop smoking service (67%)
  • Weight management service (66%)
  • Screening for conditions (64%) such as diabetes and COPD
  • Pregnancy testing and support (63% - women only)
  • Opportunistic one-to-one advice leading to healthier lifestyle choices (60%)
  • Sexual health screening (39%) including Chlamydia, syphilis, gonorrhoea and HIV

Shirley Cramer CBE, Chief Executive RSPH said: “Much has been made recently regarding the strains on A&E departments and GP surgeries across the country. Pharmacies offer a fantastic opportunity to improve public’s health in a relaxed and informal setting within local communities while relieving the strain being placed on other healthcare services.”

“There is a growing body of evidence showing community pharmacies are successful when it comes to delivering health improvement initiatives. Couple this with the fact that an estimated 95% of people visit a pharmacy at least once a year and it becomes clear that utilising pharmacies to deliver commissioned services has the potential to be hugely beneficial in the battle against high levels of avoidable illness and premature mortality.”

RSPH is also calling for:

  • For local authorities and pharmacy teams to enhance the visibility of pharmacy based initiatives in local communities through newspaper and radio advertising as well as outreach to schools, universities and community venues to present pharmacies as accessible venues
  • For local authorities to commission further research into the effectiveness of pharmacy-based health improvement initiatives to add to existing evidence
  • For health and wellbeing boards to include pharmacy representatives
Read the report
Blog: Healthy Living Pharmacies - More than just a Pharmacy

 

Ends

For more information

Matt Keracher, Policy and Communications Assistant, RSPH [email protected] 020 7265 7381

Notes to editors

  • Populus interviewed a random sample of 2,109 GB adults aged 18+ online between 20th – 22nd February. Surveys were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults.  Populus is a founder member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.  Further information at www.populus.co.uk.
  • The Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) is an independent health education charity, dedicated to protecting and promoting the public’s health and wellbeing;
  • We are the world’s longest-established public health body with over 6000 members drawn from the public health community both in the UK and internationally;
  • Our operations include an Ofqual recognised awarding body, a training and development arm, health and wellbeing accreditation, and a certification service;
  • We also produce a wide-variety of public health conferences; our publishing division includes the internationally renowned journal Public Health; and we are developing policy and campaigns to promote better health and wellbeing.
  • For more information: www.rsph.org.uk; Twitter: @R_S_P_H