Urgent prescription alerts, managing patient requests for the one-off use of a pharmacy and automatic download of prescription requests are among the improvements pharmacists requested to the Electronic Prescription Service in a survey carried out by NHS Digital.

About 1,000 pharmacists took part in the online survey, which was launched in September to seek views on which enhancements to EPS should be prioritised.

The top three most requested EPS enhancements were:

  • High priority prescriptions: ability for prescribers to add alerts to urgent EPS prescriptions
  • One-off nomination: to manage a patient’s request for the one-off use of a pharmacy while ensuring that future prescriptions return to the original nominated dispenser
  • Automatic downloads: ability to choose to automatically have prescriptions appear in the dispensing system inbox throughout the day without manual download requests.

Sibby Buckle, chair of the Pharmacy Digital Forum and vice chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s English Pharmacy Board, said: “On the whole, we agreed with the findings, especially high priority prescriptions. When you are a public-facing pharmacy with four thousand scripts a week, it is really important when you are downloading every hour that priority scripts are flagged.”

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