Sale of Medicines (Pharmacists)

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Health – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 6th July 1964.

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Photo of Mr Rafton Pounder Mr Rafton Pounder , Belfast South 12:00 am, 6th July 1964

asked the Minister of Health if he will introduce legislation to restrict the sales of all medicines, including proprietary brands of medicinal products, to pharmacists only.

Photo of Mr Anthony Barber Mr Anthony Barber , Doncaster

The current review of medicines legislation has not so far suggested that so comprehensive a restriction would be in the public interest.

Photo of Mr Rafton Pounder Mr Rafton Pounder , Belfast South

May I thank my right hon. Friend for that Answer? Is he not aware that there must always be a qualified pharmacist at all times on the premises of any dispensing pharmacy even if he is selling only aspirins or cough mixture, whereas at the same time a supermarket can employ a nonqualified teen-age assistant to sell the same articles? Is he furthermore aware that when customers go into a supermarket for aspirins or something of that kind it may not necessarily be the article they want? The qualified pharmacist can offer guidance whereas the unqualified assistant cannot always do so.

Photo of Mr Anthony Barber Mr Anthony Barber , Doncaster

I see the point made by my hon. Friend. One of the matters being considered in the review is whether the existing restrictions on the sale or supply of medicine need extending at all, but, as far as I understand, the Pharmaceutical Society itself is not pressing for a complete monopoly.