Pharmacies are being let down by the supply of medicines for repeat prescriptions, says a report by Healthwatch West Berkshire.
It recently carried out inspections of three pharmacies to judge service, the findings of which were made public last week.
The watchdog found there were sometimes issues with the national supply of medicines, meaning they weren’t being delivered when expected.
Andrew Sharp, chief officer of Healthwatch West Berkshire, said: “We have raised the issue of the supply of some fairly standard medicines with the local CCG and NHS England.
“It seems the local pharmacies expect medicines to be delivered on a certain date from suppliers and tell their patients to collect them shortly after.
“But worryingly, the deliveries are not being completely fulfilled, which causes patients an added delay.
“We know the local pharmacies do all they can to try to alleviate any problems for patients when medicines are delayed, but we hope NHS England and the CCG will address the matter quickly and appropriately.”
The three pharmacies that experienced ‘enter and view’ visits by Heathwatch West Berkshire were the Boots branches in Newbury and Thatcham, and Graham Jones Pharmacy in Lambourn.
A spokesman for NHS England South Central said: “We have not received any current reports of pharmacies within West Berkshire experiencing problems with the supply of medication.
“When we are made aware of local pharmacies experiencing such issues, we work with them to understand the nature of the problem and see if it can be resolved locally.
“In some cases, supply chain issues are national and in these instances we can guide local pharmacies affected to the nationally agreed processes to be followed, to help minimise any impact on the patient.”