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Coronavirus UK: Are you allowed to go to the pharmacy during the lockdown?

Last night, Boris Johnson announced in a televised statement that stricter measures were to be introduced to keep people indoors and curb the spread of coronavirus.

In what many are calling a lockdown, people are only allowed to go shopping for essential items and for one outdoor form of exercise each day. This exercise is to be taken alone, or with other members of your household.

The Prime Minister advised: ‘You should not be meeting friends. If your friends ask you to meet, you should say No.

‘You should not be meeting family members who do not live in your home…

‘You should do this as little as you can. And use food delivery services where you can.’

Given how many shops have closed in recent days, and how many more will have closed since the announcement of the lockdown, you might want to know whether you can still get out to a pharmacy if you need to.

The key word is here is essential, as the Prime Minister said: ‘You should not be going shopping except for essentials like food and medicine.’

Medicine is still considered an essential, and pharmacies are remaining open for people to pick up medication and health products.

You are still able to go pick up your own medicine, or medicine for people you’re caring for in this time.

Essential medical needs are defined by the NHS include ‘to visit a pharmacy or deliver essential supplies to a vulnerable person.’

However, if you have developed symptoms including a new continuous cough or a high temperature, you’re advised not to leave the house for any reason.

This is particularly pertinent when it comes to GPs, hospitals, and pharmacies, as you might be contagious and could potentially infect others who are vulnerable.

In these cases, you should check the best way to get medical help at home via the NHS website.

Many pharmacies are able to dispense medicine as part of repeat prescriptions, and this is preferable to going outside for anyone who has access to the service.

Check out our guide to getting your medication while self-isolating, to see if you can find the service you need without leaving the house.

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  • Posted on March 24, 2020