GP Community Pharmacy Consultation service

Our GP Community Pharmacy Consultation Service (GP CPCS) helps you get the right help at the right time from the right healthcare professional. 

When you book an appointment to see your GP, the trained GP reception staff will ask you some questions about how they can help you. This will ensure that you are given the most appropriate care as quickly as possible and might mean the team directs you to see a health professional other than a GP. 

If your symptoms suggest you have a minor illness, such as cold or flu symptoms, aches and pains, hay fever, bites and stings, sore throat or a tummy upset, the practice staff will explain that they are going to refer you to see a community pharmacist.

Community pharmacists are highly trained health professionals with expertise in medicines and helping patients with minor illnesses. 

The reception team will contact the pharmacist to make the referral, and the pharmacist will contact you on the same day, or within 12 hours depending on the time you contact the practice.

You will receive a confidential consultation over the phone or by video call, and, if necessary, they will arrange for you to visit the pharmacy. They will offer self-care advice and may recommend over-the-counter medication which you can purchase if you wish.

If the pharmacist believes your symptoms suggest you may have a more serious condition, they will help you arrange an urgent GP appointment or escalate to an urgent care setting. 

The pharmacist will make a record of the outcome and will send this via secure digital messaging to your GP – so that your records are always up to date.

What are the benefits?

The benefits of this service to you:

  • You will be referred by the practice and the pharmacist will contact you. 
  • You will be seen more quickly as community pharmacies are open for longer and at weekends.
  • The pharmacist will give advice on treatment, enabling you to start to recover more quickly. 
  • You can choose a pharmacy near your home or work – whichever is the most convenient.
  • Depending on your illness the pharmacist may recommend over-the-counter medication which you can choose to purchase if you wish. Often, over-the-counter treatments are inexpensive and cheaper than prescription medication. 

Using the GP CPCS service means you will have better access to the care you need when you need it, and it will help to reduce waiting lists, enabling those patients with acute and complex conditions get an appointment more quickly.