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Boots UK Transforms Pharmacy Experience

24 May 2019
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Pharmacy at Boots is changing. From May, Boots UK is transforming how customers access healthcare by bringing together the convenience of online ordering with the care of over 6,500 pharmacists - creating a market-leading omni-channel pharmacy experience.

Working together with NHS Digital and NHS England, Boots has developed a Free Online NHS Repeat Prescription Service[i], available through the Boots app and boots.com. Over 50%[ii] of people struggle to make it to their GP or pharmacy to collect a repeat prescription so the new service offers customers an unrivalled online experience to manage their repeat prescriptions.

The online pharmacy service gives patients the convenience of ordering repeat prescriptions from their mobiles, arranging collection from a store or having it delivered to their home for free​​​​​​​. 

In July, combining expertise from health technology company Wiggly-Amps Limited[iii], the service[iv] will make the critical links between a customer, their GP and their pharmacist even simpler, so customers can directly order their repeat prescription from their GP record to be sent to Boots for dispensing.

Patients will see changes in some stores too – a brand new Express Pick Up lane will make long queues a thing of the past. From the end of May, prescriptions ordered online can be collected from around 600 Boots pharmacies, with a promise customers can pick up their prescriptions in 2 minutes or less.

Boots is also trialling secure prescription collection lockers[v] in two stores which will give an alternative way to pick up your medicines.

Seb James, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Boots, comments: “Boots has been at the forefront of innovating in health for 170 years. It’s time for us to do that again because we know our customers and the NHS need more from pharmacy. What makes Boots unique is our ability to combine a digital solution with face to face advice from the incredible 6,500 pharmacists who help people get better and feel good every day.”

Richard Bradley, Pharmacy Director, Boots UK, added: “Digital Healthcare is integral to the NHS Long Term Plan. In ten years’ time, I think pharmacy services at Boots will be almost unrecognisable; pharmacists will spend less time dispensing and more time offering clinical services. Through our investment in digitising pharmacy, our pharmacists will have more time to bring even greater value to the overall primary care system, offering greater choice and access to health care.”

Helen Normoyle, Director of Marketing, Boots UK added: “Our new pharmacy app is a completely new way for our customers to manage their medicines, so our direct response TV advert helps customers understand the benefits of the service and what makes it unique. This is the first time Boots has advertised pharmacy services on TV for 14 years, and we’re excited to be bringing a market-leading offer to our customers.”

To complement the launch of the Boots Free Online NHS Repeat Prescription Service, an integrated marketing campaign has started, including activity in-store and online across social media, content and PR. A TV advert launched to customers on May 20th on ITV.

[i] Excludes Northern Ireland.  Participating surgeries only.  Prescription charges may apply,  see Boots.com/NHS for more details

[ii]Boots Ominibus Survey of 2000 people, carried out by Censuswide, March 2019.  Question referenced: Q3 Do you ever struggle to make it in to a GP or pharmacy to collect the repeat prescriptions?

[iii] Boots UK acquired Wiggly Amps Limited in January 2019 allowing access to software which links customers and patients directly to their GP records for ordering prescriptions online

[iv] Excludes Northern Ireland.  Participating surgeries only.  Prescription charges may apply,  see Boots.com/NHS for more details

[v] Thornaby-on-Tees and Manchester

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Boots UK is the largest pharmacy-led health and beauty chain in the UK and its purpose is to champion everyone’s right to feel good. With 2,336* stores and a team of around 52,000* colleagues, of which approximately 6,600* are registered pharmacists, the Boots brand has been at the heart of local communities across the UK since 1849. Boots UK is committed to providing exceptional customer and patient care and being the first choice for pharmacy, beauty, healthcare and wellness, alongside offering its innovative portfolio of product brands, including No7, the UK’s No1 skincare brand, Soap & Glory, Liz Earle, Sleek MakeUP and YourGoodSkin.

Boots UK is part of Walgreens Boots Alliance (Nasdaq: WBA) – a global leader in retail pharmacy, impacting millions of lives every day through dispensing medicines, and providing accessible, high-quality care. More company information is available at boots-uk.com.

*As of Aug. 31, 2020