Listen, Act, Improve, has been core to our philosophy over the past year, and a key part of that process has been working closely with a number of customers on the development of Pharmacy Manager. Since the beginning of 2020 Tom Bisset, Superintendent Pharmacist at Ward Green Pharmacy has been working with the Cegedim pharmacy product team on the development of new Pharmacy Manager features, including reviewing the beta versions of both Summary Care Record Integration (SCR 1-Click) and Real Time Exemption Checking (RTEC).
Tom Bisset says, “Cegedim has become far more responsive over the past year. I was keen to find out what else was being developed and if I could help with the progress of Pharmacy Manager. Within days of receiving the beta version I was tweeting about how great SCR 1-click is.”
Summary Care Record
Integration to the Summary Care Record (SCR) has become a vital part of business as usual within pharmacies as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. While access to SCR has been available to pharmacists, the time taken to cut and paste an individual’s NHS number meant that it was an unused resource. It was simply too clunky to use effectively in a busy pharmacy.With one click integration with Pharmacy Manager, pharmacists have immediate access to all the information required – from the status of a prescription, to medication history and, critically during Covid, an individual’s shielding status.
“When the shutters came down in March and patients were struggling to get hold of their GPs, they turned to pharmacists for help,” Tom Bisset says. “They wanted to know if the script is in the pipeline and if there had been any changes. Many individuals were distressed; others were volunteers collecting for people they didn’t know who were shielding. Pharmacy Manager’s one click integration came at exactly the right time, speeding up the process for finding this information.”
SCR integration also helps the pharmacy to manage the medications for those patients moving around the system – from hospital to nursing home and back home. While the pharmacy will receive discharge information from hospitals when a patient goes home, there is no notification if the individual goes via a nursing home.
He says, “Using SCR 1-click, we can immediately verify the latest medication information – what they had, where it was from, the dose, as well as any medications that have been stopped, which is equally important.”
Real Time Exemption Checking (RTEC)
The shift to electronic prescriptions (ePrescriptions) has delivered a number of benefits, however it has created new problems for pharmacists regarding exemption checking. While the traditional paper based method enabled pharmacists to check exemption status on receipt of the script, now it has to be checked at the moment the medication is handed to patients. Many patients are unsure of their status – and in a Covid-world, far more prescriptions are now collected by friends and volunteers who simply will not know. Pharmacy Manager’s RTEC feature ensures the exemption information is accurate and available in real time, providing the pharmacist with all the information required relating to an individual’s exemption status, including the reason for exemption.
The process is smoother, reducing the time patients spend in store, as well as ensuring paperwork is completed up front – avoiding the need for physical interaction which is key to Covid protection.
Tom Bisset adds, “RTEC also means a pharmacist can focus on providing the right information regarding dosage and usage - with the patient concentrating on that information rather than worrying about their exemption status and paying for prescriptions.”
With the pharmacy now using ePrescriptions 95% of the time, RTEC has become a standard feature within day to day dispensing.
Tom Bisset’s involvement in the development process continues. He is in routine communication with several of the Cegedim team working on different features and functionality. “It is definitely a two way process,” he says. “It is all very well understanding how a product works in the lab or development environment but is also important to know it works in the hothouse of a pharmacy.”
He is also actively encouraging colleagues to update Pharmacy Manager with the monthly releases as soon as possible to avoid missing out on important features and benefits. Concluding,
“As the NHS and the demands on pharmacy evolve you need to have a system that supports you. As the national contract changes, as a result of Cegedim’s community collaboration I have more confidence that Pharmacy Manager will continue its monthly improvements and match our changing needs.”