Editorial Comment

Access to GP Records and Prescriptions

Records CabinetSpeedy Transfer of GP Records

When using EMIS LV I was impressed by the immediacy of GP2GP records transfer system. Records arrived from the previous practice minutes if not seconds after the new patient had been registered. But when I moved to a practice using Systm One I found it irritating that it was not up to par with the EMIS system. I last worked in a surgery in early 2014 and at that time it was not possible to move records between the two clinical systems.

Two Tier system

Imagine my annoyance as a patient when I registered with a Cumbria practice last year using EMIS firstly as a temporary patient and then as permanent patient and more recently registered back with a practice in West Yorkshire only to find that my records had not been transferred at all.  I decided to investigate why and this included taking up my query with my Member of Parliament and the DH Minister.

Too bug to move?

After initially receiving a response telling me that all was possible, GP2GP transfers were working, I have now received a reply telling me the roll out of GP2GP transfer systems incorporating transfers between clinical systems is only 86% complete and what’s worse if you have a record that is 5mb or more is size it will not transfer anyway.

Lloyd George still rocks

So despite all the investment in GP Clinical Software Systems, we are still printing out reams of paper and sending the packages to the new practice who then have to find ever-growing shelf space to accommodate the old ‘Lloyd George’ record. Where is the incentive to summarise these records effectively I wonder? Essential information about my health care is not moving to my new practice quickly enough. However to be fair I did find that when attending another local practice in Leeds for an extended hours appointment the practice had access to my records and my medication records. So at least something in the world is right.

Life is now more complicated as patients can elect to have their prescription transmitted to their pharmacy of choice. Whilst this happens promptly you may still have to wait for it to be dispensed in the pharmacy next door once the human factor becomes involved. However, be careful that you have chosen your pharmacy of choice! You can change it and still have a paper prescription. So perhaps even with instant access to records, not everything in GP World is rosy. Perhaps I need  some new glasses……… can I see my record on my mobile phone?

Robert Campbell – September 2015


Robert Campbell

By Robert Campbell<br><img src="" alt="Robert Campbell" class="avatar" width='50' height='50'/>

Started work writing medical cards in 1966 at Staffordshire Executive Council. Have worked at Inner London Executive Council, Hertfordshire Executive Council, Lambeth Southwark and Lewisham FPC, Birmingham FPC, Dudley FPC and Wakefield FPC and Family Health Services Authority. I was seconded to the NHS Appeals Unit and have worked as a full time GP practice manager since 1992 until 2010. I was also an AMSPAR trainer at Park Lane College, Leeds. Now I work as a freelance author.