The NHS is introducing a new and more convenient way for you to obtain medication, including repeat prescriptions, from your chosen pharmacy.
The service is being introduced to all GP practices across Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale over the coming months. Your local pharmacy and surgery will inform you when the Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) will be available at your GP practice. A full list of GP practices that are currently offering the service is listed on the NHS Choices website.
What does this mean for you?
- If you get a repeat prescription, you will not have to spend your time going to your GP practice each time to pick up your paper prescription. Instead, your GP will send it automatically to the place you choose, with less chance of it getting lost.
- Nearly all pharmacies will be connected to the service, so you will be able to get your medicines from any pharmacy you choose – whether it’s near home, work or the shops.
- You may not have to wait as long for your prescription items, as often there will be time to prepare your repeat prescription items before you arrive. If any of the medicines on your prescription are out of stock when the pharmacist receives your prescription, they can be ordered in ready for you. Please contact your preferred pharmacy to see how this will work for you.
Is this service right for you?
Yes, if you have a stable condition and you:
- Don’t want to go to your GP practice every time to collect your repeat prescription
- Collect your medicines from the same place most of the time
- Use a prescription collection service now
No, if you:
- Don’t get prescriptions very often
- Pick up your medicines from different places
- Travel or work away from home a lot
How do I use the Electronic Prescription Service?
You need to choose a place for your GP practice to electronically send your prescription to. This is called nomination. You can choose:
- A pharmacy
- A dispensing appliance contractor (if you use one)
- Your dispensing GP practice (if you are eligible, however please note there are no dispensing GP practices in Bury)
Places which offer this service will display this sign in the window:
Ask any pharmacy or dispensing appliance contractor that offers EPS or your GP practice to add your nomination for you. You don’t need a computer to do this.
A full list of pharmacies that are offering electronic prescriptions is listed on the NHS Choices website. You will see 'Electronic Prescription Service available here' next to the name of the pharmacy listed.
What happens once I have nominated?
Your GP will send all your future prescriptions electronically to the place you have nominated. By giving a short period of notice, you can simply change or cancel your choice at any time. See ‘How do I nominate?’ above.
Can I change my nomination or cancel it and get a paper prescription?
Yes you can. If you don’t want your prescription to be sent electronically, tell your GP. If you want to cancel your nomination speak to your pharmacist, dispensing appliance contractor or GP. If you want to change your nomination, speak to your new pharmacist, dispensing contractor or your GP. Tell them before your next prescription is due, or your prescription may be sent to the wrong place.
What if I already use a prescription collection service?
Nomination works in a similar way to a prescription collection service where the pharmacy collects your prescription for you.
The main difference with nomination is that your prescription will be sent electronically, and you don’t have to choose a place that is near to your GP practice.
What happens if I choose not to nominate?
Nothing. You will continue to receive paper prescriptions as you do now.
Is EPS reliable, secure and confidential?
Yes. Your electronic prescription will be seen by the same people in GP practices, pharmacies and NHS prescription payment and fraud agencies that see your paper prescription now.
Sometimes dispensers may see that you have nominated another dispenser. For example, if you forget who you have nominated and ask them to check or, if you have nominated more than one dispenser.
Watch our video about the Electronic Prescription Service - available in seven languages: English, British Sign Language, Bengali, Cantonese, Farsi, Polish and Urdu.
More information about the EPS is available from your local pharmacy, GP surgery or online at www.connectingforhealth.nhs.uk/eps.
Alternatively, you can contact Patient Services at Greater Manchester Commissioning Support Unit.