Pharmacy First

Pharmacy teams offers advice, treatment or referral to other healthcare teams if required.  Image of a pharmacists hand holding two packets of tablets and a clipboard


Your local pharmacy can provide you with expert help for treating conditions such as sore throats, earache and cold sores, along with common clinical conditions such as urinary tract infections (UTI's).

Pharmacy First
Pharmacy First is available at your local pharmacy. Under the Pharmacy First Scheme, you can (after consultation with a pharmacist) get a prescription medication free of charge for various minor ailments, including:

  • antibiotics for UTIs (women aged 18-65 meeting certain criteria)
  • acne, allergies, athlete's foot
  • backache, blocked nose
  • constipation, cold sores, cough, cystitis (in women)
  • diarrhoea
  • earache, eczema
  • headache, hayfever, headlice, haemorrhoids (piles)
  • impetigo, indigestion
  • mouth ulcers
  • sore throat
  • pain, period pain
  • threadworms, thrush
  • warts
  • verrucas

Pharmacists, like GPs, can only provide certain medicines and products on the NHS. All of these are proven to be effective in treating your condition.

If you want a specific medicine or product, you may need to buy it. The pharmacist will give you advice on this.

Some pharmacists have an additional prescribing qualification which allows them to prescribe a wider range of medicines, normally only available from your GP practice.

If the pharmacist, or a member of their team, thinks it is better for you to see your GP or another healthcare professional, they may refer you directly or tell you to make an appointment.

Find out what conditions you can get help with at a pharmacy here  - (NHS Inform website)

Find your nearest East Lothian pharmacy

What can your pharmacist help with and what common illnesses can they treat? from NHS Lothian on Vimeo.