International Self Care Day 2021 (Self Care 24/7)

Published on: 22 July 2021


International Self Care Day is held annually on 24 July to remind us all that self care is important 24/7.

PAGB, along with colleagues and healthcare professionals across the world, supports this awareness day through media and outreach activities to amplify conversations about self care.

Share our messages on social media. We’ve created some images and gifs to use online. Go to resources.

This year we’re looking at shifting attitudes towards self care, particularly the way people view and use pharmacy services in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

A year on from our survey of 2020, we asked more than 2,000 people in May 2021 to tell us what they would do when experiencing symptoms of a minor illness such as a headache, indigestion and sore throat. We saw a shift towards self care in 2020 and we wanted to know whether that was continuing, or if people were moving back towards pre-pandemic behaviour.

We found that the number of people visiting a pharmacy first for advice or medication to help with self-treatable conditions had gone up from 37% to 47% year-on-year.

More than a quarter of people said the pandemic had changed their attitude towards self care, with comments including: “It’s made me realise it’s not always essential to go to a GP or A&E,” and: “I look up online or ask a pharmacist.”

The most commonly-reported self-treatable health conditions were headache and backache, unchanged from 2020, but colds and coughs moved into the top five.

In addition, more than half of our respondents agreed that pharmacists should have the right to update people’s medical records and almost seven out of ten people (69%) supported the idea of GP surgeries referring patients to a pharmacist if appropriate for a self-treatable condition

Read our media release to learn more.


We encourage you to use International Self Care Day as a opportunity to promote messages around self care. Follow us on Twitter @PAGBselfcare and Linked In and retweet/share our posts us spread the word about self care.

We’ve also made our Twitter cards available for you to download and use.  We’ve suggested accompanying text (but feel free to use your own!) Please remember to include our handle @PAGBselfcare and to tag other organisations in the self care space to help amplify the messages.

Pharmacy use

@PAGBselfcare survey found 47% of people turned to their local pharmacist first for advice about a self-treatable health condition – up from 37% in 2020

#SelfCare #pharmacy #ISCD2021

Use of pharmacy card


Attitudes to self care

@PAGBselfcare survey suggests the #COVID19 pandemic is continuing to change attitudes towards #SelfCare


Attitudes to self care card


Online health information

@PAGBselfcare survey reveals uncertainty about online health information – how can we tackle the problem and help people #SelfCare with confidence?

#ISCD2021 #DigitalHealth

Online information card


Most common conditions

@PAGB self care survey reveals the most common self-treatable health conditions

#SelfCare  #ISCD2021

Most common conditions card

Most common conditions gif


Confidence in self care

Which health conditions do people feel confident treating themselves? New survey from @PAGBselfcare reveals the top five

#ISCD2021 #SelfCare

Confidence card


We’re supporting our international colleagues and their campaigns for International Self Care Day too.

Check out the Global Self Care Federation’s #SelfCarePromise campaign and read more from AESGP, Association of the European Self-Care Industry.