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Scalloway doctors to appeal pharmacy decision

A DECISION by NHS Shetland not to allow the Scalloway doctors to set up their own pharmacy in the village will be appealed.

On Tuesday, Shetland health board announced that its pharmacy practices committee had declined an application by doctors Paul and Phillipa Veenhuizen of MelbyHealth Limited.

Earlier this year, the same committee had granted a provisional licence to NorsePharm Limited to open a pharmacy in the village.

The company has until the end of August to progress their application, i.e. secure premises in the village.

NorsePharm and MelbyHealth’s application had gone in to the health board at about the same time last year, but despite a vigorous campaign by the local community to have both applications heard at the same time, NHS Shetland insisted that legally that was not possible.

On Tuesday, Dr Paul Veenhuizen said that he and his wife now had no choice but to appeal the decision of the pharmacy practices committee.

“It is very disappointing, but I don’t think this is the end of it. The ball is back in the court of NorsePharm, because they are running out of time and have to act now. The whole process is dragging on, but we certainly will appeal this decision,” he said.

Operating pharmacies has become a profitable business once again as people are increasingly encouraged go to their local pharmacist with minor ailments.

Shetland Pharmacy Practices Committee also approved two further applications for pharmacies, one in Brae and the other in Levenwick.

Delting Pharm Ltd (Dr Paul Scott) plans to open a pharmacy within the Brae Health Centre, while LP Health Ltd (Dr Mark Maudsley and Dr Aileen Brown) have been given approval to do the same at the Levenwick Health Centre.

Both applications were considered “necessary and desirable in order to secure adequate provision of pharmaceutical services”, the committee said.