The urgent care pathway which has been known up to now as the Digital Minor Illness Referral Service (DMIRS) - normally pronounced D-MIRS - has been renamed the NHS Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS).
The newer label is now being used to describe the service, in which a patient is referred to a community pharmacist for assessment of symptoms rather than seeing a GP.
The service has been tested in the North East since December 2017 and in Devon, the East Midlands and London since autumn 2018, on a model based on a referral from NHS 111, following an assessment by a call advisor.
From June 2019, additional pilot phases involving referral from general practice reception teams working with care navigators (NHS England officials have previously referred to this model as 'GP DMIRS') have been tested in Cheshire and Merseyside STP; Lancashire and South Cumbria ICS; Greater Manchester ICS, North East and North Cumbria ICS; and Bristol North Somerset & South Gloucester STP.
According to NHS England, the initial pilot has shown promising results, with patients "consistently referred and reporting high satisfaction rates". The health body said care episodes had been "completed safely and appropriately" and reduced unnecessary GP appointments, "with the understanding that patients will be escalated to an appropriate service if necessary".
A training animation describing the patient journey through the service can be accessed on the NHS England website.