Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 15th March 2023.
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department is taking steps to help ensure patients nominated pharmacies are not altered without the patient’s permission.
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his officials have had discussions with NHS Digital on the switching of patients nominated pharmacies.
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department allows private businesses to change a patient's nominated pharmacy without seeking the patients permission; if he will make statement.
The purpose of the Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) is to allow prescribers to send prescriptions electronically to a pharmacy of the patient's choice. A patient can choose to nominate a pharmacy and all prescriptions will be sent to the nominated pharmacy until the patient chooses to change or remove this nomination.
Changes to a patient nomination should only be made with the patient’s consent. Although consent does not have to be provided in writing, there must be an auditable process in place.
Patients can change their current nomination using the National Health Service app or on the NHS website. General practitioners and pharmacies can also change a patient’s nomination but only with the patient’s consent. There are instances where prescriptions can be sent to another pharmacy as a one-off nomination instead of the patient’s nominated pharmacy, but this must be done at the request of the patient.
In the event a pharmacy business changes hands as an on-going concern, NHS England asks the outgoing owners to inform their nominated patients that the pharmacy is being taken over and by whom, and to offer those patients the opportunity, during a time-limited window, to opt out of their nomination being transferred to the new owner.
Additionally, patients can choose not to nominate a pharmacy, in which case patients will receive an EPS token that includes a barcode, allowing any pharmacy with access to the EPS to retrieve the electronic prescription.
Yes1 person thinks so
No1 person thinks not
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