When the EPS system was first proposed my understanding was that it would speed up the dispensing of prescriptions. However my continuing experience is that this is not so for the following reasons:1. Patients need to check that the nominated pharmacy is correct, particularly if they have been away from home and changed their nominated pharmacy temporarily.
2. GP Practices are taking longer to issue repeat prescriptions – sometimes more than two days, particularly if the request is for an acute not repeat prescription.
3. Small pharmacies often have stock problems meaning patients might have to wait far more than two days for their drugs. One pharmacy I know has prescriptions made up elsewhere.
4. If a pharmacy is out of stock the patient has the right to take the prescription to another pharmacy. However this means giving the patient a complex code and returning the prescription to the NHS spine so that another pharmacy can issue it. A simple print out of the out of stock item would suffice.
5. GP Practice’s too on a separate issue are changing patients medication without checking that supplies are in stock at the nominated pharmacy. I have had problems with Peptac, Ranitidine and Nystatin.
I would be interested to hear your solutions to these problems.