THE NHS MINOR AILMENT SERVICE
Minor ailments are conditions that can be self-treated with medicine available over the counter from your pharmacy.
The minor ailment scheme allows you easier access to the same advice, treatment and medicines from your pharmacist as you would get from your GP, without having to wait for a GP appointment.
WHAT DOES THE SERVICE OFFER?
You will be able to get advice and free treatment from your community pharmacist for minor illnesses and ailments such as:
eczema and allergies
warts and verrucae
If your pharmacist feels that it is better for you to see your GP then they may refer you directly or tell you to make an appointment with your GP.
WHO IS THE SERVICE FOR?
You can use the NHS Minor Ailment Service if:
- you are registered with a GP surgery in Scotland, and
- you are either under 16, under 19 in fulltime education, age 60 or over, have a valid maternity exemption/medical exemption/war pension exemption certificate; you get income support, income based jobseeker’s allowance, income related employment and support allowance, pension credit guarantee credit or you are named on, or entitled to, an NHS tax credit exemption certificate or a valid HC2 certificate and
- you don't live in a nursing or residential care home.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
- You register for the service with the community pharmacy of your choice.
- You don't have to make an appointment. You can go along at a time that suits you.
- Your consultation will always be with a qualified pharmacist.
- If your pharmacist thinks that you need a medicine or product to treat your symptoms they will give you this without you needing to pay.
HOW DO I REGISTER?
- You can register for the NHS Minor Ailment Service at a community pharmacy of your choice. You can do this at any time.
- Your pharmacist will ask you for some details - your name, date of birth, gender, and postcode. He or she will also check whether you pay for your prescriptions.
- Your pharmacist completes a form which you must sign to register for the service.
- You will be asked to mark the reason why you don't pay for your prescriptions on the form.
- Your pharmacist may ask you for proof of your exemption, for example your maternity or medical exemption certificate or HC2 certificate. Try to remember to bring this information with you if you think you might need to.
- Your pharmacist will print a separate form for each member of your family, including children.
- You can only register with one community pharmacy at a time for the NHS Minor Ailment Service.
- If you want to go to another community pharmacy for the NHS Minor Ailment Service, you can. But you will need to register with the new pharmacy.
- If you do register with a new community pharmacy you will no longer be registered at the pharmacy where you were registered before.
YOU WILL STILL HAVE TO GO TO YOUR GP IF:
- your pharmacist suggests you should, or
- you need a medicine that you can only get on prescription from your GP.
CAN I STILL GO TO MY GP?
- Yes. You can still make an appointment with your GP if you feel this is more suitable.
CAN I STILL GO TO OTHER PHARMACIES?
- Yes. You can still use other pharmacies to buy medicines or to pick up your prescriptions.
- But remember, you can only use the NHS Minor Ailment Service at the community pharmacy you've registered with.