Pharmacy to offer unique service

Deliveries to help out customers

Bassingbourn Pharmacy will become the first establishment of its kind to offer a free prescription delivery service available five days a week throughout the area.

They will deliver prescriptions to residents that use the Royston Healthcare Centre, Roysia Surgery, Market Hill Surgery in Royston, the Orchard surgery in Melbourn and Bassingbourn surgery, but are ‘non-dispensing’ patients, which mean they live too close to qualify for the free delivery provided by some of these surgeries.

Under NHS regulations, if a resident lives within 1.6km of the surgery, they do not qualify for prescription dispensing from that surgery.

These non-dispensing patients that pick up their prescriptions from pharmacies that do not provide delivery services can now have them delivered by Bassingbourn pharmacy’s full-time delivery staff.

Pharmacist for Bassingbourn Pharmacy Anil Sharma said: “The service went live on June 12 when we opened, and the response has been really good so far.

“However, not everyone can pick up prescriptions. If you live within 1.6km of the surgery then you qualify for deliveries from Bassingbourn surgery if you wish.

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“It is available to anyone, including people that will be at work. As long as there is someone ready to take responsibility for it then it is fine.”

Susan van de Ven, councillor for Melbourn, had coincidently already begun making tracks for the service before the pharmacy introduced it. She said: “The surgeries would like to deliver to who they want but under health authority rules they are not allowed. This way everyone has free access to prescriptions.”

“The problem for people living near the end of the radius is that it is often too far away for them to get to the surgery.”

Luckily, Dr Sharma had the same idea as Cllr Van d Ven. He said: “I found about about her idea purely by chance when the Health Authority told me about it.

We spoke and organised it to start when we opened. We were not originally planning on offering it until later in the year when children go back to school and the bad weather stops people going out, but we thought that we could start it sooner.”

For more information on the service, call Bassingbourn surgery on 01763 250660.