Read all about our Official opening – as published in the Westmeath Examiner
The eagle-eyed among our readers may have noticed a subtle but important change at one of Mullingar’s town centre businesses in the last fortnight: the name Weir has come down from over the door and the name McGreal has gone up. McGreals is a growing family-owned chain of pharmacies, led by Kilian McGreal, a third generation pharmacist. McGreals took over management of Weir’s Pharmacy three years ago, appointing pharmacist Niamh Scally as supervising pharmacist. Over the summer of this year, the McGreals chain bought the 66-year-old business out, as Niall Weir decided to retire, and Niamh is now a part-owner of this latest acquisition. “I always knew I wanted to get back near home,” says Killucan native Niamh, who worked with the McGreals pharmacy in Baltinglass, prior to the arrival of the Mullingar opportunity. Now that she is a mum to three young sons, she is even more delighted to be back in Westmeath to provide customers with best in class pharmacy care.
Niamh has over 20 years’ pharmacy experience and together with the wider healthcare team at the pharmacy will play an integral role within the local community healthcare system. This is achieved by working alongside local GPs and other relevant healthcare professionals to not only support but to advance customer care and wellbeing. “I and the whole team very much look forward to continuing to serve the pharmacy needs of our customers both old and new in the months and years ahead,” Niamh said. Some changes have gradually taken place over the three years that McGreals has been in Mullingar – but customers can be assured that some dimensions to the business will continue as they have – notably the photographic side, where Joan Byrne has been providing an invaluable service. McGreal’s is continuing the strong commitment to the photographic arts that has for decades been a mainstay of the business.
With a legacy spanning 37 years, Joan has been the creative force behind developing photographs for the people of Mullingar, providing passport snaps, framing cherished memories of deceased loved ones for wakes and funerals, and offering valuable advice on cameras and photography in general. Thankfully, this tradition will persist, with Joan continuing to provide the same high-quality service that has established the store as a go-to location for both professional and amateur photographers alike.
The recent changeover at the business comes at a significant time, coinciding with the substantial expansion of the pharmacist’s role. Niamh and her six-strong team, consisting of Karen, Carmel, Joan, Regina, Sandra, and Aisling, operate out of one of the most central locations in Mullingar, a building opposite Market Square. McGreal’s arrival in 2020 preceded the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. Despite the challenging times, the pharmacy, well-equipped with a large private consultation room, seamlessly adapted to administer the Covid vaccine, with Niamh and the team playing a vital role in providing booster shots and flu vaccines.
While vaccines are a pivotal aspect of patient care, Niamh emphasizes that they represent just one dimension of the comprehensive services offered. The pharmacy provides free walk-in blood pressure testing daily, emergency contraception services, and valuable advice for parents uncertain about their child’s health concerns. Niamh also offers guidance on dosage levels for common child medications based on weight. Additionally, the pharmacy offers medical compression stocking consultations.
Several of these additional services at McGreal’s Pharmacy are provided free of charge and are accessible through their new and improved website, www.mcgreals.ie. In terms of prescriptions, streamlined services now allow doctors to email prescriptions directly to McGreal’s, ensuring that required medications are prepared and ready for patients when they visit. The team can even send out text notifications to inform patients when their prescribed medications are ready for collection. Looking ahead, starting March 2024, pharmacists will gain the authority to extend prescriptions beyond six months to twelve months, a positive development expected to save time for patients in their interactions with healthcare providers.