A NEW pharmacy has opened up on a housing estate in Leek for patients who previously had to travel into the town centre for their medicines.
Imaan Pharmacy has opened on Queens Drive in Haregate, Leek, and is being led by pharmacist Jawad Mehroof.
Mr Mehroof, who is also the company business development manager, has been a pharmacist for six years and was previously based at a facility in Derby.
The pharmacy is one of 43 branches owned by Imaan Ltd, which has sites across the country including Dover, Warrington, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Middlesborough, Southampton and Salisbury.
Mr Mehroof said: “The area is very mixed. Before we came here we did a lot of research to find out the area’s need for a pharmacy and how close the nearest one was to our catchment areas, which is probably Ball Haye Street.
“In this area there are a lot of young families with children and a high elderly population, and the area is relatively deprived, and those areas tend to need local pharmacy services the most.
“There are also great access issues in that it’s next to a main road, and a lot of people cannot drive and would have to rely on buses to get to their nearest pharmacy.
“I find that people who live in this area don’t want to, or are unable to, go out unless the service is local.”
Feedback from the community to the opening of the pharmacy has been very positive and welcoming.
Mr Mehroof is holding an official open day on Saturday, April 27, with Leek Town Mayor Pam Wood attending.
He said: “A local pharmacy was very much needed and it has been greatly welcomed by the community and everyone who’s come here has been very welcoming, and is using us and recommending us and coming back to us."
The pharmacy is part of a new scheme by the NHS called Pharmacy First, which it is running in co-operation with Leek Health Centre in Fountain Street.
The scheme means that exempt patients registered with Leek Health Centre can go straight to their pharmacy with any minor ailments instead of their GP. Services include medication reviews, blood pressure checks, blood sugar monitoring and minor ailments such as acute pain/headaches/temperature, athletes foot, bites and stings, cold sore, common cold/flu/nasal congestion, conjunctivits, (acute) constipation, cough, diarrhoea, eczema/dermatitis/dry skin, hay fever, head lice, heartburn/ indigestion, haemorrhoids, impetigo, infant colic, mouth ulcers, nappy rash, oral thrush, scabies, sore throat, sprains and strains, teething and treadworm, thrush.
Mr Mehroof said: “We want to be the first port of call for patients, so no-one has to make appointments to see a pharmacist; I’m always available."
The pharmacy is open seven days a week – Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm, Saturday 9am to 1pm and Sunday 10am to 2pm – and offers a free unconditional repeat prescription order, collection and optional delivery service.
For information about the service, contact 01538 386279 or email queensdrivepharmacy@ alliedpharmacies.com