Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) – A new way to get your medicines and appliances

The surgery have asked us to share this news with you. It looks like a very useful new way for the doctors to more efficiently send your prescription to your preferred pharmacy:

On the 10th April 2018 we are moving over to Electronic Prescribing. We have provided some information below about what this means, how it will work and how you go about nominating yourself for this service. 

The Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) is an NHS service. It gives you the chance to change how your GP sends your prescription to the place you choose to get your medicines or appliances from.

What does this mean for you?
If you collect your repeat prescriptions from your GP you will not have to visit your GP practice to pick up your paper prescription. Instead, your GP will send it electronically to the place you choose, saving you time. You will have more choice about where to get your medicines from because they can be collected from a pharmacy near to where you live, work or shop. You may not have to wait as long at the pharmacy as there will be time for your repeat prescriptions to be ready before you arrive. 

Is this service right for you? 

  • Yes, if you have a stable condition and you: 
  • Don’t want to go to your GP practice every time to collect your repeat  prescription 
  • Collect your medicines from the same place most of the time or use a prescription collection service now 

It may not be if you: 

  • Don’t get prescriptions very often 
  • Pick up your medicines from different places

How can you use EPS? 

You need to choose a place for your GP practice to electronically send your prescription. This is called nomination. 

You can choose :  

  • A pharmacy
  • A dispensing appliance contractor (if you use one) 
  • Your dispensing GP practice (if you are eligible) 
  • Ask any pharmacy or dispensing appliance contractor that offers EPS to add your nomination for you. You don’t need a computer to do this. 
  • Please go into the pharmacy of your choice and ask to sign up to EPS, the Pharmacy will take your details, add your nomination and notify us as your GP Practice

Can I change my nomination or cancel it and get a paper prescription?
Yes you can. If you don’t want your prescription to be sent electronically tell your GP during the appointment. If you want to change or cancel your nomination speak to any pharmacist or dispensing appliance contractor that offers EPS, or your GP practice after the 10th April 2018. If you want to change your nomination permanently, tell your GP Practice before your next prescription is due or your prescription may be sent to the wrong place. 

Is EPS reliable, secure and confidential?
Yes. Your electronic prescription will be seen by the same people in GP practices, pharmacies and NHS prescription payment and fraud agencies that see your paper prescription now. Sometimes dispensers may see that you have nominated another dispenser. For example, if you forget who you have nominated and ask them to check or, if you have nominated more than one dispenser. Dispensers will also see all the items on your reorder slip if you are on repeat prescriptions. 

IMPORTANT:
Please note – until you have ‘nominated’ your Pharmacy your prescriptions will be processed in the same way as they were previously (collect, or paper copy to your Pharmacy).

PATIENT AWARENESS:
If you receive a request from Pharmacy 2U please note we have not passed on your details. They are a company based in the North and are totally unrelated to this practice. We would recommend that patients select pharmacies local to them.

Benefits of EPS

  • If you collect repeat prescriptions you will not have to visit your GP practice just to pick up your paper prescription. Instead, your GP will send the prescription electronically to the place you choose, saving you time. 
  • The prescription is an electronic message so there is no paper prescription to lose. 
  • You will have more choice about where to get your medicines from because they can be collected from a pharmacy near to where you live, work or shop. 
  • If the prescription needs to be cancelled the GP can electronically cancel and issue a new prescription without you having to return to the practice – saving you extra trips. 
  • You may not have to wait as long at the pharmacy as your repeat prescriptions can be made ready before you arrive. 

Where is EPS available?
Check the EPS map to see which GP practices and pharmacies are offering EPS now, or in the near future. Just choose your area and zoom in. If you click on the coloured icons the name of the practice or pharmacy will be shown. Pharmacies will display the EPS sign to show you that they are using EPS and can be nominated. If you have any questions, you can ask your pharmacist or GP, they will be happy to help you. 

When will EPS be available to me?
EPS is available to you when both: 

  • your GP surgery has the service and the pharmacy you want to collect your medicines from has the service. 
  • Use the EPS map to see if EPS is available in your GP surgery or preferred pharmacy. You can use NHS Choices to search by your address or the name of your practice or pharmacy. 

I care for someone who has regular prescriptions, can we use EPS?
Yes, if the person you care for gets regular prescriptions you will no longer need to make trips to the practice just to collect a paper prescription. You can choose a pharmacy near to where you work, live or shop so you can collect the medicines when it is convenient for you. To set the nomination you or the person you care for will need to ask someone at any pharmacy or dispensing appliance contractor that offers EPS to add the nomination. You don’t need a computer to use EPS. 

More detail on the benefits 

  • Less time and money spent visiting the GP surgery and pharmacy:
  • No need to go back to the pharmacy for medication that is owed to you, as the pharmacy will know what you need in advance
  • No need to visit your GP practice just to collect a paper prescription as they are sent electronically 
  • If there is a problem with your prescription, your GP can cancel and replace the prescription electronically, so you won’t have to return to your GP practice to collect another one. 
  • Your dispenser can prepare your repeat prescription in advance so it is ready for when you arrive. 

More convenience and choice: 

  • Choose where your prescriptions are sent, whether near your home, where you shop or where you work. This is flexible and can be changed at any time, just let your doctor or pharmacy know 
  • Collect your next prescription in advance to cover holidays 
  • If your GP offers a telephone consultation, there’s no need to leave the house just to collect your prescription as it will be sent electronically to your chosen pharmacy for collection 
  • No need to send stamped addressed envelopes as prescriptions are sent electronically 

Improved safety: 

  • Electronic prescriptions cannot be lost so you won’t have to spend time trying to find them or asking the surgery to issue another paper prescription. 
  • Electronic prescriptions are more accurate which will reduce the risk of receiving the wrong medication. 

If you are unhappy with the nomination process
Patients must be provided with sufficient information about EPS and give their consent before a nomination is recorded. If you are unhappy with your experience of nomination, you can complain to the pharmacy, dispensing appliance contractor (DAC) or GP practice. You can also complain to NHS England or their local NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) if your complaint cannot be resolved.

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