EMIS Health GPs pilot electronic controlled drug prescriptions

12 Oct 2018

GP practices using EMIS Web have become some of the first in the country to pilot electronic prescriptions for controlled drugs.

EMIS Health surgeries in Yorkshire, the North West and London are among ten now sending Schedule 2 and 3 controlled drugs via NHS Digital’s Electronic Prescription Service (EPS). Successful piloting will be followed by rollout to all EMIS Health sites in England.

Under EPS, patients can choose to have their prescription dispensed anywhere in the country, so all dispensers are being alerted that they could receive an electronic prescription for a controlled drug. Because not all dispensing systems can endorse electronic prescriptions for oral liquid methadone with a packaged dose endorsement (PDn), a paper FP10 prescription will still be needed for this drug. 

The move to include controlled drugs in EPS benefits patients and clinicians alike:

  • reduced administrative burden for GP practice and pharmacy
  • prescriptions cannot be lost or misplaced
  • dispensers can see at a glance everything prescribed, to make more informed decisions
  • less chance of errors 
  • patients who had chosen not to use EPS because their controlled drug prescriptions were on paper can now make the switch

Dr Shaun O’Hanlon, chief medical officer, EMIS Group said: “We are pleased to be one of the first GP system suppliers to pilot electronic prescriptions for schedule 2 and 3 controlled drugs."

“EPS has been an exemplar program in interoperability in the NHS and this important enhancement will help to improve patient safety.”