Get Easter prescriptions in early to avoid last-minute rush for vital medication


People living across Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire are being urged to arrange any medication they may need for the Easter break well in advance of the long weekend.

As most pharmacies in the region will close at the end of the day on Thursday 28 March, and not reopen until Tuesday 2 April, getting prescription requests in early will ensure orders can be processed and collected in plenty of time.

Going without regular medication, even for a day or two, can put a person’s health and wellbeing at significant risk, and could potentially result in them needing rapid medical attention.

Gill May, Chief Nurse, Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board, said: “During the Christmas and New Year break, we saw high numbers of people using our urgent care services to ask for emergency prescriptions.

“Letting medicines run out, especially at a time when many pharmacies are closed, not only adds pressure to an already-busy health and care system, but puts people, many of whom are vulnerable, at a much greater risk of falling ill.

“We want everybody in our region to enjoy the long Easter weekend safely, which is why we’re making this plea – for people to get their prescriptions in well ahead of time – much earlier than usual.

“Requesting a repeat prescription this week should mean that most items will be ready for collection with at least two weeks to spare before pharmacies close their doors on the eve of Good Friday.”

Most people can now order their repeat prescriptions digitally, either through the NHS App, which can be downloaded for free on to any smartphone or tablet, or via the website of their GP practice.

Recent data shows that the number of people downloading the NHS App locally has surged in the last few weeks, which indicates a positive shift towards more patients beginning to independently manage their own health and wellbeing.  

Patients not yet signed up to the digital features of their practice’s website, such as prescription ordering, viewing test results and, in some cases, booking appointments, can do so by speaking to the team at their surgery directly.

A small number of pharmacies across the region will be open on Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday for any person in need of an urgent prescription or advice for a minor illness or injury.

Easter opening times for all pharmacies are expected to be announced in the coming weeks, and will be shared on the ICB’s website and social media pages. Further information on prescriptions, along with details of how to access health and care services out of hours, can be found online at