Sefton Central Labour MP tells pharmacists they are an essential part of our NHS as government threatens future of community pharmacies
Sefton Central Labour MP, Bill Esterson told a group of pharmacists that they were a crucial part of making our NHS work. He also told them he shared their concerns about government cuts to pharmacies and the impact on residents across Sefton.
Bill Esterson met the pharmacists at the Sefton Local Pharmacy Committee meeting and heard about their work across Aintree, Maghull, Crosby and Formby. The group also showed the MP the Forward View for Community Pharmacies, which sets out how pharmacies can play a central role in delivering high quality, sustainable health and care services.
Bill Esterson said, "I am struck by just what a great job our community pharmacies do right across Sefton. My family uses community pharmacies where we live in Maghull and we know that we can get advice and support as well as prescriptions when we visit the pharmacist. This can avoid the need for a GP appointment or a trip to A&E or a minor injury unity and can save a lot of time and money for the NHS as well as helping with care and treatment. The government has cut social care to the bone. It has allowed pressure to grow at A&E and in our GP surgeries not least in parts of Sefton like Maghull and it is planning to cut funding to pharmacies and force patients to collect prescriptions for a central hub, which may be hard to reach for many
"So the fact that pharmacists are proposing greater use of their services can only be good news in relieving pressure in the hard
pressed NHS at a time of budget deficits and growing waiting lists.
"Pharmacies are at the heart of communities. They provide treatment and advice straight away. They can deliver prescriptions to our older and disabled residents who can't go out. They also provide jobs and support for other local businesses by attracting customers who then also visit neighbouring shops.
"The government plans to cut pharmacy fees make no sense for our NHS or for the economy and I hope that the government is going to listen to what the pharmacists say in the Community Pharmacy Forward View.
"My Labour colleagues are in no doubt that we should be supporting our community pharmacies and I will do what I can to help our excellent pharmists across Sefton. Thank you to all our community pharmacists and thank you to the Sefton Local Pharmaceutical Committee for meeting me and for telling about their excellent plans to offer even better services to the people of our area."