There seems to be no possibility collecting a prescription, which is in a sealed and labelled bag, from a pharmacy unless the pharmacist is available.

This does not prevent any prescriptions being given out to the wrong person, nor does it prevent the wrong medicines being put into the bag in the first place. It simply inconveniences the customer, and puts pressure on the pharmacy either to employ two pharmacists or restrict the pharmacist's free time. If the pharmacist is sick or has transport problems, then nobody can get the medication which may well be ready for them to collect, until a locum is arranged.

I don't know if this is as a result of direct legislation,eg "only the pharmacist can supply prescription medicine" , "a pharmacist must be present whenever…" or yet another over-eager application of "Health and Safety" legislation.

Either way, it is a nonsense.  Rarely, an individual needs to speak to a (usually busy) pharmacist: he/she would just have to wait, as is presently the case.

Why is this idea important?

It would mean that urgent and important medicines could be handed over to sick people who need them, whenever the pharmacy is open, instead of at restricted times.

It would allow pharmacies to be more flexible with their opening hours, and perhaps stay open longer.

It would allow more flexible working hours for pharmacists, and provide opportunities for small pharmacies to serve their community better. 

It does not increase the risk of an individual receiving the wrong medication.

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