Strangford MP Jim Shannon says the removal of the Minor Ailment Service from chemists and pharmacists is short-sighted.
Mr Shannon said 400,000 consultations had taken place from January 2009 to Feb ruary 2010. “One can only presume that cost is the reason, but when you compare to the cost of a GP consultation which is 4-5 times more costly than treating a patient in the pharmacy led minor ailments scheme.
“In addition, I am informed that the limited range of medication available in the pharmacy formulary helps to reduce drug costs. The minor ailment scheme freed up GP appointments for more serious complaints, provided patients with accessible treatment at a convenient location and brought relief to the Health Service budget.”