MP calls for Henfield pharmacy to improve
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert convened a meeting on Friday (8 January) to address concerns raised about the pharmacy provision in Henfield.
Mr Herbert received several complaints last year about the Henfield branch of Lloyds Pharmacy, and he took those concerns up with their Head Office and with NHS England.
Following a discussion with GPs and local residents at the Henfield Medical Centre last November the MP asked Lloyds to attend a meeting to discuss their concerns.
The meeting on Friday, with senior representatives from Lloyds Pharmacy, Henfield Medical Centre, the Parish Council, and patient representative groups, highlighted areas of action to deliver a safe and efficient service for customers.
Lloyds Pharmacy have committed to improving their services. They recruited a new Pharmacy Manager in the summer, have increased stock levels and are providing a home delivery service if a product is not available at the time of collection.
Lloyds have also confirmed they will be refitting the shop in the Spring. They will be extending the dispensary area and stock room to the second floor, providing a third till point and more operational space. Lloyds say that people with prescriptions will still be able to collect them from the lower level of the shop, and that waiting times and efficiency will improve as a result of the new layout.
The work is planned to begin in March and is expected to take six weeks to complete. Lloyds claim that services will not be affected during this time.
The Henfield Medical Centre will be going live with the Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) on 19 January. The new system will enable prescriptions to be requested, authorised and sent to a patient’s nominated pharmacy electronically.
The Medical Centre is renewing its bid for a second pharmacy in the village, to manage the rising demand for services, and this is supported by the parish council and included in the neighbourhood plan.
Lloyds have been invited to make a short presentation at the next Annual Parish Meeting on Tuesday 1 March at 7pm, and all are welcome to attend.
Kevin Shepherd, Area Manager for Lloyds Pharmacy Henfield said: "We are aware of customers’ issues at Lloyds Pharmacy Henfield and very sorry to have fallen short of the high standards we expect in all of our pharmacies. There are changes already in progress to address the concerns in Henfield and we will continue to make improvements so we can better meet the community’s needs."
Nick Herbert said: “Lloyds admitted that their pharmacy service in Henfield has not been good enough and they have committed to improving it. The local community will be watching carefully to ensure that this is the case.
“With substantial housing growth in Henfield over recent years and more homes coming, it is obvious that pressures on the pharmacy will only increase. I think the village needs a second pharmacy, which is why I will continue to support the medical centre’s application for one”.