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Positive Solutions has become the latest pharmacy system supplier to develop and test technology to help deliver an Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) in Wales.

A wall of medicine boxes in a pharmacy

Positive Solutions, whose software is used in pharmacies across Wales including Well and Morrisons, is developing its system to enable it to be ready to receive prescriptions digitally rather than on paper.

The software has completed the testing environment phase and will soon enter a testing phase at a pharmacy in south Wales. If successful, it will be introduced in partner pharmacies as part of a phased roll out of EPS across Wales from summer 2024.

The introduction of EPS across Wales enables GPs to send prescriptions electronically to the patient’s choice of community pharmacy, without the need for a green paper form.

Jenny Pugh-Jones, Senior Responsible Owner of the Primary Care Electronic Prescription Service programme, said: “It’s fantastic to enter this test phase with Positive Solutions, which has a long and trusted history supporting pharmacies in Wales and is working at pace to help us deliver an EPS.

“Positive Solutions’ technology powers many community pharmacies in Wales, and we are looking forward to the benefits that its EPS software will bring to patients, pharmacy staff and GPs.”

Lancashire-based Positive Solutions is the third pharmacy system supplier to develop and test its system to be ready for EPS in Wales, following Invatech (Titan PMR) and Boots.

Steve Russell, Positive Solutions Chief Commercial Officer, said: “We’re delighted to be working with NHS Wales to support the project digitalising prescriptions and delivering EPS across Wales. 

“We have a long heritage of driving innovation to community pharmacies and are excited for the benefits that will be delivered to both our pharmacy customers and their patients. We look forward to rolling out EPS across all our Wales pharmacy customers soon.”

The first electronic prescription in Wales was sent from Lakeside Medical Centre to Wellington Road Pharmacy, Rhyl, in November 2023, using EMIS Group GP system and Invatech’s Titan pharmacy system. Both systems have now passed assurance testing.

Earlier this month, patients in Conwy became the second community in Wales to use EPS, with prescriptions being sent from Llanfairfechan’s Plas Menai Surgery to two pharmacies - Boots in Llanfairfechan and Gwynan Edwards in Penmaenmawr. Boots is testing its own pharmacy system, while Gwynan Edwards uses Titan.

To develop its technology, Positive Solutions received funding from the Community Pharmacy System Innovation Fund. Led by Life Sciences Hub Wales in partnership with the Digital Medicines Transformation Portfolio and on behalf of Welsh Government, the Fund is available to suppliers of digital community pharmacy systems in Wales. 

Cari-Anne Quinn, Life Sciences Hub Wales Chief Executive, said: "The participation of Positive Solutions in our Community Pharmacy System Innovation Fund marks another significant stride in our journey towards establishing a comprehensive electronic prescription service in Wales. 

“This underscores our collective effort to make pharmacy systems more efficient, easier to use and environmentally friendly for staff and the people of Wales. Life Sciences Hub Wales remains dedicated to fostering innovation and collaboration for the betterment of healthcare delivery in Wales."

The delivery of an EPS in Wales is a key part of the Digital Medicines Transformation Portfolio, which brings together the programmes and projects that will deliver the benefits of a fully digital prescribing approach in all healthcare settings in Wales.

It will also help the environment, saving up to 40 million paper prescription forms from being printed each year in Wales.

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