The Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) has been highly commended at the prestigious HSJ Value in Healthcare Awards 2016, which recognise innovation and cost savings of hundreds of millions of pounds for the NHS.
EPS was runner up in 'The use of information technology to drive value in clinical services' category and was one of a handful of entries which was singled out as highly commended by the judges.
The team attended the event at Manchester Central, Manchester on 24 May along with HSCIC colleagues from the Spine who were also shortlisted in the same category. It was won overall by the Division of Women's Health, King's Health Partners.
EPS enables prescriptions to be sent electronically from a GP surgery to a dispenser of the patients' choice and then on to the NHS Business Services Authority for payment. In 2014/15, EPS made efficiency savings in excess of £115m. For prescribers, efficiencies include bulk signing repeat prescriptions, the ability to cancel prescription items and the reduction of lost prescriptions. Dispensers no longer need to transcribe paper prescription information. Standardised information reduces queries and the likelihood of the wrong medication being dispensed and makes the end of month claim process more efficient. Prescriptions are sent straight to the dispenser of choice, minimising patient collection time. EPS is now live at 6,212 GP practices (80%) and 11,620 pharmacies (98.6%). 18.8 million patients have chosen an EPS pharmacy and more than 47% of all prescriptions are EPS transmitted.
The HSJ Awards recognise and promote the finest achievements in the NHS, and showcase them to the service's most influential leaders.
Programme Head, Rachel Habergham, said:
"We are delighted that the Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) has received the accolade of highly commended at the HSJ Value in Healthcare Awards 2016. For the first time, EPS recently processed one million prescriptions electronically in a single day and the total number of electronic prescription items issued through EPS has hit 500 million.
With the ultimate aim of replacing written GP prescriptions, EPS seeks to drive efficiencies, save money, improve patient safety, and improve patient choice. Although we didn't quite win, we were a close runner-up and this is a reflection of the contribution that EPS is making to driving value in clinical services."