Pharmacies are retail locations that are able to supply prescription drugs. Pharmacies will also be present with hospitals and similar large medical centres to dispense prescription drugs within the hospital itself. Within both types of pharmacy, prescription drugs are dispensed by pharmacists, who are also often colloquially known as chemists.
Pharmacists are allied health professionals with specialised education and training, who perform various roles to ensure optimal health outcomes for their patients through proper medication use. In addition to the provision of prescription medication and drugs, pharmacies provide a broad range of allied medical and other non-medical services and retail products. Pharmacies will supply a range of non-prescription medicine and treatment products, including homeopathic and health supplements, and first aid supplies. Retail pharmacies will stock cosmetic and personal beauty products and will often sell perfumes and toiletries for both men and women.
Pharmacists can provide support, advice and treatment services for a range of disorders and conditions, including diabetes, high blood pressure, stomach disorders and osteoporosis. Pharmacies may also provide allied medical service such as infant health, naturopathy and methadone programs. Pharmacies will most often provide services during standard retail hours; however some stores in high traffic or central areas may provide extended hours of trading.