Hastings patients left waiting for medications after pharmacy closures

LloydsPharmacy in Battle Road. Picture: Google
LloydsPharmacy in Battle Road. Picture: Google

LloydsPharamacy has apologised to its customers after the closure of two of its pharmacies left people waiting for their medications.

The pharmaceutical company closed two of its stores – one in Hastings and another in St Leonards – in December.

The LloydsPharmacy in Sedlescombe Road North closed on Monday (December 9), while the store adjacent to the Hastings Old Town Surgery, in High Street, Hastings, was shut on December 31.

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Hastings pharmacy to be second to close this month

As a result, patients were required to visit the LloydsPharmacy in Battle Road, St Leonards, to collect their medication.

However, on January 2, a sign was erected inside the shop which said: “Customer Notice, we will not be dispensing any new prescriptions today. Any prescriptions yet to be processed will not be completed until next week. Your nearest pharmacy is Lloyds Pharmacy at Sainsbury’s.”

In response, a spokesman for LloydsPharmacy apologised that the Battle Road pharmacy has been ‘below the high standards that we set ourselves’.

He added: “The busy Christmas period, combined with staff sickness has resulted in slower than normal service.

“The team are working hard to clear the back log and we have listened to our patients about their concerns and are making immediate improvements to ensure we get back to the high standards they deserve as quickly as possible.

“The community we serve are very important to us and we apologise for any inconvenience caused while trying to resolve this issue.”

LloydsPharmacy said the closures were made ‘because of increasing financial pressures, including business rates and changes to pharmacy funding’.

At the time, Katie Ballard, an employee at LloydsPharmacy, said “The Old Town community are appalled that they are losing their pharmacy. We are adjacent to the Hastings Old Town Surgery and many of the surgery’s patients use us regularly for convenience and advice. Our housebound patients will now also be losing their free prescription delivery service.”

A petition has been set up to support the NHS in granting a licence for a new pharmacy within the new location of the surgery when it moves to Ice House, in Rock-a-Nore Road.

It is currently available to sign in the Old Town Surgery.

Katie said many patients have also offered to write letters of support to this proposal.