Now Patient: Service updates – key information during the Coronavirus pandemic

1 Apr 2020
Stefano Mirabello
Stefano Mirabello
Medical Writer
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As we experience unprecedented times as a nation, and the country is on lockdown, we want to reassure all our valued Now Patient customers that we have measure in places to ensure there is limited disruption to our service.

We are an NHS approved Pharmacy and our work is essential to the health service and our Now Patient team are classed as ‘critical sector workers’.

We will be working throughout this pandemic to ensure we can fully dispense your prescriptions, as safely as is possible and support the NHS at this time.

Where do you cover?

At present Now Patient is only able to dispense prescriptions to patients in England. We do not currently deliver to Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

What measures are being taken to ensure my medication is delivered safely?

We have implemented a social distancing policy within our business to ensure that our staff remain healthy and able to work, and those staff who are able to do so are working from home.

We are in regular contact with organisations including NHS England, the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, other pharmacy companies, and our regulator, the General Pharmaceutical Council, following the latest guidance, sharing best practices, and continuing to operate to the highest levels of care under these exceptional circumstances.

Do I have to pay for the service?

Our app is free to download. If you pay for your NHS prescription then you will pay the usual fee set out by the NHS.

There is no charge for using the Now Patient ordering and delivery service. It is completely free. The only cost that you might incur is if you have to pay for your NHS prescriptions. In this case we are required by law to pass on the NHS prescription fee.

What if you don’t have my medication in stock?

Due to the unprecedented demand, there are nationwide shortages of certain items.

This may mean that you receive your order with an item missing. If this is the case, we will send on the outstanding item as soon as it is available.

Do I need to order my repeat medication earlier than normal to ensure it is delivered?

We’re continually working with GPs to ensure our patients get their right medication at the right time. Due to the unprecedented demand, there are nationwide shortages of certain items.

This may mean that you receive your order with an item missing. If this is the case, we will send on the outstanding item as soon as it is available.

Please only order medication you really need and avoid stockpiling to help the rest of the population.

How is my medication being delivered during the Coronavirus pandemic?

Your medication will continue to be delivered via Royal Mail – which is also classed as another essential service and is currently operating as normal.

Is my medication taking longer than usual due to the pandemic?

As you can imagine, demand is presently very high. As such, orders are taking 5 working days longer to process than usual.

Will delivery take longer than usual?

Royal Mail are currently operating a normal service. They have regular updates on its service which can be found here: https://www.royalmail.com/coronavirus?iid=HPM1CORONAVIRUS

How can I contact you in I have a query about my medication?

We have experiencing a high-level of calls currently. If you have any queries regarding your order, please email: support@nowpatient.com

We do understand these are stressful times but please be considerate of our staff. They are doing everything they can to support you and so we kindly ask that you treat them with respect, so they can be as quick and efficient as possible in answering your queries.

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Do you have plans if your service is down?

Now Patient has a Business Continuity Plan (BCP) that is triggered if our systems are down. The aim of our BCP is to ensure that there is no significant disruption to the delivery of the health care services provided by Now Patient and that the pharmacy contributes effectively to civil emergencies where appropriate. ISO 22301 defines business continuity as:

“The capability of the organisation to continue delivery of products or services at acceptable predefined levels following a disruptive incident”