The Pharmacy First scheme provides professional health care advice, treatments, and medicines for common illnesses from your local pharmacy, without the need for an appointment.


  • Pharmacists are highly qualified health care professionals who are experts in medicines. They can give the same advice and treatment for common illnesses as GPs.
  • Pharmacies are open during normal business hours and many are open late, on Saturdays and on Sundays.
  • It may be quicker to see your pharmacist than wait for a GP appointment.
  • You don’t need an appointment.
  • Medicines offered are free of charge if you are normally exempt from prescription charges. If you usually pay for prescription charges, you can still receive advice and can pay the cost of any medicine issued or the standard prescription charge, whatever is cheaper.
  • Anything you say to the pharmacist is treated with confidence.

How Does it Work?

If you are feeling unwell and may have any of the common illnesses listed below, you can access Pharmacy First at the selected pharmacies at the bottom of the page in two ways:

1. You can present yourself to your local participating pharmacy. You will be seen by a pharmacist and can ask for a private consultation.

2. Your GP practice or health care services may signpost you to a participating pharmacy.

Your local participating pharmacist will explain the service to you and ask you for some details including your name, date of birth, postcode, and GP practice to register for the service.

If you choose not to register,  you can still receive free confidential professional health care advice but will not be able to obtain any medication for free (if normally prescription charge exempt) or at a reduced price under the scheme.

Common Illnesses included:

  • Athlete’s foot
  • Cold sores
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Constipation
  • Coughs and colds
  • Diarrhoea
  • Dry eyes
  • Ear wax
  • Fever
  • Hay fever
  • Headache
  • Head lice
  • Indigestion
  • Itching due to chicken pox
  • Minor burns and scalds
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Nappy rash
  • Piles
  • Skin allergies or
    contact dermatitis
  • Sore throats
  • Sprains and strains
  • Teething
  • Threadworm
  • Vaginal thrush

Will I have to pay for my advice or medicine?

All advice is free and if your pharmacist believes the condition needs further review, they will recommend where to get more advice.

If you don’t pay for your prescriptions, you can get SOME medicines free from your local pharmacy without needing to visit your GP.

If you usually pay for prescriptions, you will pay the cost of the medicine or the standard prescription charge, whatever is cheaper.

Will I always get medication?

On some occasions you may not need medication and will receive professional healthcare advice.

If the pharmacist feels it is appropriate to signpost you elsewhere, they will highlight the most suitable service to you.

Medicines will ONLY be supplied when you have a current condition in need of treatment. Any medication supplied to you must only be used to treat yourself or a dependent.

Important information

If accessing the Pharmacy First scheme, you must tell your pharmacist if:

  • You are pregnant and/or breastfeeding
  • You think you might be pregnant
  • Other medications you are taking
  • Any allergies that you have

Pharmacies taking part in Pharmacy First

Amadis Chemist 107 Abbey Street, North Southwark, London SE1 3NP
AR Chemist 176-178 Old Kent Road, London SE1 5TY
ASDA Old Kent Road, London SE1 5AG
Bonamy Pharmacy 355 Rotherhithe New Road, Bonamy Estate, London SE16 3HF
Carefield Ltd 38 Albion Street, Rotherhithe, London SE16 7JQ
City Pharmacy 39/41 Borough High Street, London SE1 1LZ
Davis Chemist 10 Crossthwaite Avenue, Sunray Avenue, Camberwell SE5 8ET
Day Lewis PLC 34 Forest Hill Road, London SE22 0RR
DP & SP Ltd (Lenny Chemist) 303 East Street, London SE17 2SX
Harfleur Chemist 107 Tower Bridge Road, London SE1 4TW
Jamaica Road Pharmacy 182C Jamaica Road, London, SE16 4RT
Kembers and Lawrence 10/11 Camberwell Green, London SE5 7AF
KSC 1T Ltd t/a Ridgway Pharmacy 251-253 Walworth Road, London SE17 1RL
Lings Chemist 269 Old Kent Road, London SE1 5LU
LloydsPharmacy in Sainsburys 80 Dog Kennel Hill, Dulwich SE22 8AA
Maddock Pharmacy 5 Maddock Way, North Southwark, London SE17 3NH
Morrisons Pharmacy Aylesham Centre, Rye Lane, Peckham, London, SE15 5EW
Qrystal Pharmacy 7 Newington Causeway, London SE1 6ED
Sheel Pharmacy 2 Sir John Kirk Close, London SE5 0BB
Sheel Pharmacy Ltd 8 Nunhead Green, Peckham, London, SE15 3QF
St Georges Healthcare Ltd 46 St Georges Road, London, SE1 6ET
Surdock Pharmacy 162 Lower Road, London SE16 2UN
Taplow Pharmacy Unit 5, Ground Floor, Taplow, Thurlow Street SE17 2UQ
VNK Pharma Ltd t/a Medica Pharmacy 202 Southwark Park Road, London, SE16 3RW
Walworth Pharmacy 192 Walworth Road, London SE17 1JJ
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