A leading Shrewsbury pharmacy is providing a new potentially life-saving service and has expanded the team in a bid to take the pressure off GPs and hospitals.
A new superintendent pharmacist, a pre-registration pharmacist and a dispensing assistant have been welcomed to Lunts Pharmacy at Hereford Road in Shrewsbury, where extra enhanced services are now being delivered.
The independently-owned pharmacy is providing Atrial Fibrillation (AF) screening for the over 65s. AF screening can speed up the diagnosis and referral process for the heart condition which causes an irregular and often abnormally fast heart rate, increasing the risk of suffering from a stroke.
AF testing can be carried out for all patients over 65 with a simple 30-second pulse check being the first step of testing. They can then be referred to the GP if necessary, for a confirmed diagnosis. AF can result in individuals gaining disabilities or death from stroke if left undiagnosed and untreated.
In addition to the AF service, the branch will also be offering Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) testing for 16 to 75-year-old females if they have symptoms which indicate a possible infection. The pharmacist is then also able to provide a treatment for the UTI.
Ian Swindell, Lunts Hereford Road Pharmacy Manager, said: “These are exciting times at the pharmacy and it’s important to keep people informed about what we are doing and the enhanced services we are able to offer.
“We are thrilled to welcome three new qualified members of staff. Connor Hunt, our new superintendent pharmacist, Amar Nagra, our new pre-registration pharmacist and Charlotte Brown, our new dispensing assistant all bring a great deal of experience and expertise to benefit our customers.
“Their appointments tie into the launch of new enhanced services on site - UTI testing and AF screening, which could prove to be a life-saving initiative.
“Pharmacists are playing an increasingly important role today in taking some of the strain away from GPs and A&Es, acting as an initial port of call for people to get advice from a fully trained pharmacist before a decision is taken on what to do next.
“It is helping significantly with over-stretched services. By enhancing the services we offer we will be taking even more pressure off, and UTI testing will save doctors or nurses appointments for more urgent cases every day of the week.”
Ian added that they were extremely grateful to be able to invest in and grow the business in spite of the difficulties community pharmacies were facing which was unfortunately resulting in closures.
He said locally this included the planned closure of Boots Pharmacy in nearby Longden Coleham, and urged people affected to call in and talk through their medical needs and repeat prescriptions to make sure they did not miss out on medication.
“We are welcoming customers from the nearby Boots Pharmacy which is closing on 10 August. It’s important to let those customers know they can come to us to ensure their prescription and health needs are met.
“Those customers can pop in and introduce themselves to talk to our team about their medical needs and their repeat prescriptions - something which it is important to keep on top of - particularly at this time of year during the busy holiday period,” said Ian.
The NHS Flu Vaccination is also offered as part of the Hereford Road pharmacy’s enhanced services, with a walk-in service being available six days a week, or by booking an appointment.
Lunts Hereford Road Pharmacy is part of the MSN & LUNTS Pharmacy group which is a family-run independent group with nine branches in Shropshire, Birmingham and the Black Country, including pharmacies in Shrewsbury town centre, Craven Arms and Pontesbury.
For more information about Lunts Pharmacy in Hereford Road, Shrewsbury, and the services they provide, visit www.msnlunts.co.uk, phone 01743 351918 or call in and speak to a member of the team.