Healthy Living Pharmacies

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What are Healthy Living Pharmacies?

This is a tiered commissioning framework that encourages pharmacies to play a key role in improving the health and wellbeing outcomes in their communities and helping to reduce health inequalities. Healthy Living Pharmacies have a proven track record of commissioned service delivery in optimising the use of medicines and in areas such as health checks, smoking, obesity, sexual health, alcohol and harm reduction. 

How do Healthy Living Pharmacies benefit Primary Care?

Healthy Living Pharmacies complement the care and support planning work that takes place in general practices. Practice staff can support awareness of  Healthy Living Pharmacy offers and can potentially build community pharmacy support into patients’ care and support plans as places to seek advice, where appropriate. 

About the HLP Framework

There are three levels of service delivery within the Healthy Living Pharmacies framework:

  • Level 1 Promotion: Promoting health, wellbeing and self-care (in July 2016, Level 1 changed from a commissioner-led process to a profession-led self-assessment process)
  • Level 2 Prevention: Providing services (commissioner-led)
  • Level 3 Protection: Providing treatment (commissioner-led).

Essential requirement by 1 April 2020

Community pharmacy contractors will be required to achieve Level 1 by 1 April 2020 as agreed in the five-year deal between the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee, NHS England and NHS Improvement and the Department of Health and Social Care; this reflects the priority attached to public health and prevention work.

What can a Healthy Living Pharmacy offer the community?

Healthy Living Pharmacies can engage with populations who do not regularly access other care services. Staff  are proactive in supporting members of the community to live healthier lives, by raising customer awareness of local support including smoking cessation, diabetes prevention and mental health services. 

In a Healthy Living Pharmacy, the Health Champion and other staff may proactively approach customers about their health and wellbeing issues and will be able to provide information and signposting to local services. There will be a health promotion zone and a health promotion campaign linked into local priorities and health needs.

Evaluations of Healthy Living Pharmacies demonstrate an increase in successful:

  • smoking quits
  • extensive delivery of alcohol brief interventions and advice
  • emergency contraception
  • targeted seasonal flu vaccination
  • common ailments
  • NHS health checks
  • healthy eating
  • physical activity
  • healthy weight services.

For more information, visit the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee website.

Eligibility criteria


There are no inclusion criteria for Healthy Living Pharmacies. However, for patient convenience, Healthy Living Pharmacies located in Islington are ideal for Islington residents or patients registered with an Islington GP as the information they provide will be tailored to the pharmacy’s local community.

How to refer


Healthy Living Pharmacies operate on a walk-in/self-referral basis