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Prescription and dispensing tokens

Paper copies of electronic prescriptions are called tokens. They act as a hard copy of the details contained within an electronic prescription. Find out more about the types of tokens, along with what to do with them.

Types of token

There are two types of token - prescription tokens and dispensing tokens. 

Prescription tokens are printed on green stationery at the GP practice and dispensing tokens on white stationery at the pharmacy.

Following the introduction of EPS Phase 4, the NHS Prescription Services will now process green prescribing tokens as well as white dispensing tokens.

About prescription tokens

Prescription tokens:

  • are usually printed at the GP practice on FP10 prescription forms
  • are only a copy of the electronic prescription and should never be signed by the authorising prescriber - any attempted manual amendment or endorsement has no impact on the electronic prescription which can only be amended or cancelled electronically
  • will always have the name and address of the nominated dispensing contractor printed on them. This ensures the patient always knows who they have nominated
  • can be scanned at the pharmacy to retrieve the prescription, but in most cases for repeat prescriptions they will have already been downloaded in advance of the patient arriving
  • will show any notes the prescriber has added to the electronic prescription for the patient or pharmacy to be aware of. This can be a useful way of communicating clinical information to the patient

About dispensing tokens

Dispensing tokens:

  • are printed by the dispensing contractor on white stationery (FP10DT) which can be ordered from your NHS PCS Supplier
  • should be printed when a patient needs to sign for payment or exemption declaration purposes. No signature is required if the patient is age exempt
  • should be printed when a patient needs to visit another pharmacy to collect their medication. Remember to return the prescription to the NHS Spine and give the dispensing token to the patient to take to another pharmacy. They can then scan the token to retrieve the prescription
  • can contain notes added by the prescriber to communicate clinical information to the patient
  • are not seen by the NHS Prescription Services. They are only used for counter fraud purposes. Anything you write on a dispensing token will be ignored and all endorsements must be completed on your pharmacy system.

The end of month process

At the end of the month,  white dispensing tokens and tokens and green Phase 4 prescribing tokens should:

  • be sent to the NHS Prescription Service if they have been signed by the patient to capture payment / exemption declarations (except age exemptions) and must be sent in the same month that the electronic claim is submitted, for counter fraud purposes
  • be confidentially destroyed if they have not been used for dispensing purposes and have not been used to capture exemptions or payment declarations
  • be separated from the FP10 paper prescriptions before they are sent to NHS Prescription Services. Dispensing Tokens do not need to be sorted in the same way as FP10's as they do not need to be sorted by group
Last edited: 2 July 2019 8:10 am