Since December 2020 NHS Digital has established a daily collection of data from electronic prescription and administration systems.
This data relating to medicines prescribed and administered to patients is sourced from secondary care NHS trusts in England. It's limited to those using electronic prescribing and administration systems (EPMA) supplied by WellSky which overall cover around 9% of the total prescribing activity in secondary care.
Data from Cerner EPMA systems capturing prescribing will be available in Summer 2021 providing an additional 6% of the total prescribing activity.
An average sized hospital will create around 1,750 new prescriptions daily resulting in 8,000 medicine administrations daily.
For this phase of the EPMA Project (Phase 2) in-scope Trusts have submitted historical data covering the period from 1 January 2019 up to the day before they commence a daily (weekly in some cases) ongoing provision of data. This provides a full year of pre COVID-19 EPMA data (depending on when the EPMA system was implemented).
Trusts do not currently use their EPMA system to record all prescribing and administrations. Certain specialities (for example ICU, Oncology, Paediatrics) or medications (for example Warfarin, IV infusions) may not be recorded in the EPMA system. The coverage and exactly what is included/excluded varies from Trust to Trust.
Key data fields being collected include:
- NHS number
- inpatient prescribing
- inpatient medicine administration
- outpatient prescribing
- outpatient medicine administration
- discharge prescribing (including short term leave)
Medicine on admission and Indication for prescribing may be included in the Cerner data available in the summer 2021.