Minor Ailment Service at Community Pharmacies

What is the NHS Minor Ailment Service?

Everyone can go to their pharmacist for advice or to buy a medicine for a minor illness or ailment. But if you are eligible to register with the NHS Minor Ailment Service, you will be able to get advice and free treatment (if the pharmacist thinks you need it) from your pharmacist for a wide range of minor illnesses and conditions.

Who is the Minor Ailment Service for?

You can use the NHS Minor Ailment Service if:

  • you are registered with a GP surgery in Scotland, and
  • you are under 16, or under 19 and in full-time education
  • you are 60 or over
  • you have a valid maternity exemption certificate, medical exemption certificate, or war pension exemption certificate
  • you get Income Support, Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Universal Credit or Pension Credit Guarantee Credit, or
  • you are named on, or entitled to, an NHS tax credit exemption certificate or a valid HC2 certificate.

 

How do I register with the service?

The NHS Minor Ailment Service is available from pharmacies across Scotland.

  • You can choose which pharmacy to register with
  • You can register at any time – you don’t have to make an appointment
  • When you register, your pharmacist may ask you for some information, including your name, date of birth and postcode
  • They will also check whether you can use the NHS Minor Ailment Service and may ask you for proof, e.g. your maternity or medical exemption certificate. Try to remember to bring this proof with you
  • Your pharmacist will complete a form, which you must sign, and complete a separate form for each member of your family, including children under 16, or under 19 and in full-time education
  • You can only register for the service with one pharmacy at a time. If you register with a new pharmacy, you will no longer be registered at the old pharmacy.

While you are registered for the service, you can still make an appointment to see your doctor whenever you like.

 

Remember: even if you can’t use this free service, you can go to your pharmacist for advice or to buy a medicine for a minor illness or condition.

For further information, see the NHS Minor Ailment Service booklet

Last Reviewed: 15/10/2015