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Boots trials in-store interpretation app

Boots is trialling a digital interpretation service in five stores.

The service allows Boots colleagues to communicate with non-English speaking customers to ensure they receive excellent customer service, as well as critical information regarding medicines from the pharmacy.

According to the 2011 Census, there are around 726,000 residents in England and Wales who cannot speak English easily, while a further 138,000 are unable to speak English at all.

Boots is trialling the interpretation mobile app from Voyce which is available in Belfast, Birmingham, Knightsbridge, Leicester, and Southampton on in-store iPads. The digital service connects colleagues and customers with interpreters who can translate over 245 languages.

“Boots has been at the forefront of health innovation for 170 years. This pilot scheme is a great example of how technology can help us drive better patient outcomes, through a simple, innovative service that will help our pharmacy teams make sure that our patients get the most from their medicines, without language as a barrier,” said Richard Bradley, pharmacy director, Boots UK.

The pilot is part of Boots’ wider transformation plans for its pharmacy division. In May, the retailer launched a free online repeat prescription service, which will be available to Boots customers through its app or website. The online pharmacy service gives NHS patients the option to order repeat prescriptions online or via their mobile, they can arrange to collect prescriptions from store or delivered to their home for free.

Meanwhile, Boots recently snapped up Rich Corbridge to lead its digital transformation as the director of innovation. The health-tech expert spent 19 months as chief digital & information officer at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, and before that held roles as CIO of the Health Service Executive, CEO of eHealth Ireland, as well as holding multiple industry board advisory positions.