NHS Pharmacy First Scotland

The New NHS Pharmacy First Scotland (PFS) service launched on the 29th of July 2020 to replace the Minor Ailment Scheme.

The service is designed to ensure pharmacies are the first port of call for minor illness and disease.  The new service removes registration for customers, making it easier for them to access the service, and easier to implement for the pharmacy teams.

The PFS service can be initiated any point a member of staff initiates a consultation with an eligible customer.  A member of the pharmacy team can then advise, refer or supply treatment.  If the decision is made to treat the customer, then the following options are available:

  • Supply an OTC medication from the Approved List (see related Link)
  • Customer may purchase an OTC product if not available on the Approved List
  • Supply a Prescription Only Medicine via the local Health Board commissioned PGD.

The NHS Pharmacy First Scotland Directions 2020 and the Service Specification can be found under related internet links.


The new funding model will reimburse based on the number of activities undertaken by community pharmacy contractors plus a base payment made to each pharmacy contractor.  Activities being either advice, referral or treatment made by a member of the pharmacy team.

Pharmacies will also be reimbursed for the items supplied on the Approved List, this list will be published in a new section within the Scottish Drug Tariff, Part 17.

There is an attached guide to the new funding model:

NHS Pharmacy First Scotland SOP template

PCA Circular - 2 new PGDs June 2021

Related links:

NES Turas

CPS - Pharmacy First Service