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End of an era for Urgent Pharmacy

Wednesday, February 20, 2019   Posted in: Signatory Notice Board By: Administrator With tags: health, medical, services

Canterbury CDHB CEO Update: Monday 18th February 2019

The Urgent Pharmacy on Bealey Avenue will close its doors on Sunday 24th February 2019, having served the medicinal and primary health needs of the Christchurch public for over a century.

The venture started during World War One in a bid to rationalise the shortage of medicines. The Urgent Pharmacy continued to dispense medications after working hours, during public holidays, seven days a week, through another World War, influenza outbreaks, and most recently the Canterbury earthquakes.

The Pharmacy was initially located in New Regent Street, and moved up to the corner of Bealey Avenue and Colombo Street in the mid-1980s.The unique co-operation of general practitioners and pharmacists resulted in an integrated model of general practice rooms, an X-ray suite and a large dispensary, working in unison to service the after-hours health needs of the people of Christchurch, says Chair of the Urgent Pharmacy, Des Bailey.

“From this new site, with easy access and plentiful parking, plus a back-up generator and independent water supply, the Urgent Pharmacy dispensed well over a million prescriptions to Cantabrians.

”With the recent relocation of the 24 Hour Surgery to larger premises at 401 Madras Street, it is time to write an end to the Urgent Pharmacy’s chapter of service to the community," he says.

“On behalf of the Board I want to thank the original pharmacists who invested their time and money in the Urgent Pharmacy vision and for the many decades of service from staff members who manned the ship.

“Thank you also, to the original group of GPs who invested and worked alongside us. May that spirit of health-delivery partnership continue into the future.

Pharmacy services will continue to be available after-hours to Christchurch’s community from various other pharmacies associated with after-hours medical care providers, such as:

  • Unichem Moorhouse Pharmacy (Pilgrim Place): open 7 days from 8am to 8pm;
  • Unichem Riccarton Clinic Pharmacy (Yalldhurst Road): open 7 days from 8am to 8pm; and
  • Unichem Bealey Avenue Pharmacy (in front of the Pegasus Health 24 Hours Surgery): open 7 days from 9am to 10pm.

Many pharmacies are open for extended hours - in major shopping centres and with supermarkets.
View a list of Canterbury pharmacies and their opening hours.

Healthy Christchurch Champions

  • Canterbury District Health Board
  • Christchurch City Council
  • Environment Canterbury
  • Ministry of Health
  • Ngai Tahu
  • NZ Police
  • Pegasus Health
  • University of Otago, Christchurch