How Pharmacy2U project could make same day deliveries more accessible for all retail

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Royal Mail is launching same day deliveries for some Pharmacy2U medication and healthcare products – initially via the Chemist Direct brand – following a surge in demand during the pandemic. The service, which will initially focus on some postcode areas in Yorkshire, aims to give customers a speedy, convenient and secure way to order and receive medicine from the comfort of their own home.

“The Coronavirus pandemic has shifted people’s behaviours drastically and brought forward digital uptake for many. At Pharmacy2U we are doing all we can to remain at the forefront of consumer demand and bringing medicines straight to your front door is part of that. Through this partnership with Royal Mail, we’re hopeful that repeat prescriptions will become even more accessible and it will lead to more people adhering to their doctor’s orders. We look forward to continuing our excellent customer service through this partnership.”
– Mark Livingstone, CEO, Pharmacy2U

UK Same Day Deliveries

This is interesting as one of the services Royal Mail provide that is under utilised is same day deliveries. Royal Mail Sameday is a relatively expensive service both to provide and purchase and it’s only with economies of scale that prices will drop making it more accessible for all retailers and more attractive to consumers.

Same day deliveries are something that only a few giants, most notably Amazon, currently offer and even here the product range is limited as are the delivery areas. However convenience is key and same day deliveries are something we’ll see ever more of in the future.

Currently a same day service that we may be most familiar is in the B2B world of motor accessories – when you take your car in for a service your local garage probably doesn’t have all the parts needed but they can invariably same day order most common parts needed for repairs and servicing.

There are specialist carriers that undertake same day deliveries, but Royal Mail with their fleet of vans and 10s of 1000s of delivery men and women could capitalise on same day deliveries as part of their digital transformation. First they need scale to get feet on the street and then the price should come down.

Pharmay2U and Royal Mail

The launch of Pharmacy2U medication and healthcare products same day deliveries comes as Royal Mail research reveals that since the start of the pandemic 4.3 million adults across the UK have ordered medication online to be delivered to their homes for the first time. With three national lockdowns in the past year encouraging people to limit their travel, around 39% of those who ordered medication online to be delivered by post in the past 12 months did so for the first time, according to new Royal Mail research.

The research also reveals that one in eight adults (12%) currently have medication regularly delivered in the post and a further 9% have previously had medication delivered through the post. Of these people, 57% currently receive prescription medicine compared to 43% currently receiving non-prescription medicine. Four in five (81%) of these prescriptions are repeat.

The main reasons for people getting medication delivered include: for ease and convenience (59%), to avoid making journeys to the pharmacy (37%) and to avoid risk of infection from COVID-19 (24%). Other drivers include to avoid queueing in the pharmacy and due to shielding.

Looking ahead, just under a quarter (22%) of UK adults would be likely to order any type of medication online to be delivered in the post in the next year. Of these, three in five (59%) would be likely to use a same day delivery service for medication.

Reflecting the change in healthcare practices in the last year, just over half (52%) of people have had a remote medical appointment since the start of the pandemic.

In the coming months, Royal Mail and Pharmacy2U will extend their partnership to continue improving the patient experience and innovate in the delivery space. Although the service offers greater convenience for all, it is especially important for vulnerable people who are less comfortable with leaving their home at the moment.

The move comes as Royal Mail continues to help in the nation’s fight against the Coronavirus pandemic. Royal Mail has been working closely with pharmacy companies and NHS trusts across the UK throughout the pandemic by delivering prescriptions, vaccination and hospital appointments. Royal Mail has also been a key partner for the Government’s Coronavirus testing programme since the start of the pandemic, delivering and collecting test kits across the UK since April 2020.

“At Royal Mail, we have a healthy obsession with solving customer problems. When people aren’t feeling well they want an immediate fix and that’s what we’re aiming to deliver with ‘instant pain relief’ delivered straight to their door. We’re working with Pharmacy2U to deliver medicines on the same day they are ordered and look forward to significantly expanding this service in the future. The last year has reset many of our expectations for delivery and coupled with the convenience of home delivery, no queues and a reduced risk of infection we think this service is just what the doctor ordered.”
– Nick Landon, Chief Commercial Officer, Royal Mail

One Response

  1. When RM can delivery 1st and 2nd class on time…. then they can look into this. Sadly i don’t see this happening any time soon. Hell, just look at the tracking fiasco? can take several days to get it updated, or not at all.
    Sort your existing house out first before you start buying in to others.


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