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Health / Bixter dispensary operation brought in line with others

Bixter health centre.

BIXTER is the last health centre in Shetland to make changes to its pharmaceutical dispensary, bringing it in line with other isles practices.

According to NHS Shetland, patients will have to order repeat prescriptions one week before they are needed, to allow time to have them distributed to the practice for collection.

After ordering by patients or their carers, the prescriptions will be signed by the GP and collected by the community pharmacy on their next scheduled visit to Bixter – which is a minimum of 3 times weekly – before being delivered to Bixter on their next visit.

Under the old regime, medicines could normally be picked up two days after being ordered.

Alternatively, patients can select a pharmacy – Freefield, Laing’s or Boots in Lerwick, or Brae or Scalloway – from where to pick up prescriptions themselves.

According to director of pharmacy for Orkney and Shetland Chris Nicholson, the change has been brought in for “improved safety”. Bixter will continue to dispense medicines that are needed “immediately”.

The NHS has distributed a leaflet explaining the changes, which took effect on 1 September, to households in the area.

The change follows Bixter becoming a salaried practice after Scalloway doctors Paul and Philippa Veenhuisen gave up their short lived tenure of running it as an independent practice in 2017.