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#PrescribeKindness - A message from Seb James, Managing Director, Boots UK and ROI

30 March 2020
Feature Healthcare

At your side.

We always have been. We always will be.

For over 170 years we’ve supported our communities, kept our pharmacies open, and been at the very front line of healthcare.

Today we are proud to support our fellow NHS colleagues by helping to test them for COVID-19 so that many can return to their heroic work with confidence at a time of extraordinary pressure.

Like you, we’ve had to make some adjustments:

  • We are putting up protective screens in our stores to keep you and our colleagues safer and in many cases, limiting the number of people in our stores.
  • We are closing some stores during the day for an hour or so to clean them and give our teams a break.
  • We have marked out our floors and closed some sections of our stores so that people can keep a safe distance apart.
  • We are having to limit the most vital and in demand items, so there’s enough to go around.

These are sensible and safe things to do and we thank you for your help.

We have a few asks of you. Please, please observe social distancing to keep you and our teams safe. And please, please be kind to our colleagues (they are all trying their very best to support you).

We also ask for your patience as we deal with our exceptional demand. 

To make sure that medicines are available to everybody, we are waiving delivery fees on prescriptions to over 70s and our vulnerable patients. We are also hugely increasing the capacity of our free online repeat prescription service* so that everybody can get access to medicines delivered to home for free.

Every day our pharmacy team are answering the most frequently asked questions through our social channels and with our media partners. And we are running a regular online Q&A with our pharmacy experts.

Because, whether it’s in store or online, our committed pharmacists are always on hand for trusted advice.

Reflecting on all this, I suppose what I hope is that we will all keep safe, keep being kind and recognise that we are all working together to get through this.

Please help us to thank all of the key workers in community pharmacy and the NHS by sharing all your kind messages of support.



With warm best wishes,

Seb James, Managing Director Boots UK & ROI



*Prescription charges may still apply. In Northern Ireland the online prescription service is only available for in-store collection. Participating surgeries only. See for details.


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Boots is the UK’s leading health and beauty retailer with over 52,000 team members and around 1,900 stores, ranging from local community pharmacies to large destination health and beauty stores.*

Boots serves its customers and patients for life as the leading provider of healthcare on the high street and the UK’s number one beauty destination. It offers an unrivalled depth and breadth of products, which incorporates its extensive own brand range and innovative portfolio of brands, including No7, the UK’s No1 skincare brand, Soap & Glory, Liz Earle Beauty and Sleek MakeUP.

2024 marks Boots’ 175th anniversary year. Founder John Boot opened a herbalist store in Nottingham in 1849 to offer an affordable alternative to traditional medicines. His son Jesse expanded the business to become a modern retailer and the biggest chemist in Britain. Throughout its history, Boots has listened, learned and innovated, and it continues to challenge itself to improve its products and services every day.

Boots is part of Walgreens Boots Alliance, which is a global leader in pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing retail.  More company information is available on

*Figures accurate as of 31 May 2024