Chair's blog

Think pharmacist first for minor illnesses

05 March 2018

Children can be a worry at the best of times, and having a poorly youngster to cope with can be particularly challenging – especially if you’re not sure what the problem is. 

Even relatively minor illnesses can cause great concern; but it’s important to remember that your local pharmacy team can provide timely, convenient and expert advice on everything from coughs and colds, to upset stomachs, teething, aches and pains. 

Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians don’t just dispense prescriptions: they are qualified health professionals who can assess symptoms, provide guidance and reassurance, and recommend over-the-counter medication. They are also trained to spot when things are more serious and ensure people get the further help they need. 

An overwhelming majority of adults are aware about the level of service that pharmacists offer; yet just five per cent of parents and carers with children under the age of five would consider seeking help from a pharmacist for a common health complaint lasting more than 24 hours. 

But doing so can often help save time and avoid trips to the GP or A&E.


With most people living in easy reach of a pharmacy, and with no need to book an appointment, parents and carers can help their children stay well by making their local pharmacist the first port of call for any minor illnesses. 


Please see our full list of pharmacy services – including locations and opening hours - and our factsheet for parents on common illnesses and injuries children experience, and what to do if your child is unwell. 


Further information on common health conditions and treatments is available from NHS Choices.