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  • 16 hospitals across England will receive a share of nearly £16 million to introduce electronic prescriptions
  • Digital prescribing systems will replace outdated paper prescriptions, improving patient safety and reducing errors
  • On course to eliminate paper prescribing in hospitals and achieve NHS Long Term Plan commitment to introduce digital prescribing across the entire NHS by 2024

More patients and healthcare staff will benefit from single electronic hospital patient records as sixteen trusts across England receive a share of nearly £16 million to introduce e-prescribing.

These complete, single electronic records have helped improve patient safety across the NHS and save staff time which they can spend on patients.

Instead of relying on handwritten notes and paper medicine charts, staff can now quickly access potentially lifesaving information on prescribed medicines and patient history. This can also reduce medication errors by up to 30% when compared with the old paper systems.

Electronic prescribing systems have been shown to save time and money by reducing unnecessary bureaucracy and investing in these systems will help to save money and increase productivity for the NHS overall.

Airedale has received £534,000 of the funding.

Gavin Miller, Chief Pharmacist & Controlled Drugs Accountable Officer at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust says:

“It is great news for the patients of Airedale NHS Foundation Trust that we have been awarded this funding for our electronic prescribing and medicines administration system.  This funding will improve patient safety for approximately one million prescriptions that are written annually across the organisation, help reduce medication errors, and will provide significant benefits for patient care.   Improved systems will save staff time, meaning that staff will be able to provide higher quality care for our patients.”

Minister for Patient Safety, Nadine Dorries said:

“We are determined to make the NHS the safest healthcare system in the world. The introduction of digital prescribing systems has helped us reduce potentially deadly medication errors and save our hardworking staff valuable time, enabling them to dedicate their full attention and care to patients.

“As we enter what is set to be a challenging winter, the best way we can continue to protect patients and staff is if we all work together and continue to follow the national restrictions to suppress the virus.”

The funding is part of a £78 million investment to achieve the NHS Long Term Plan commitment to eliminate paper prescribing in hospitals and introduce digital prescribing across the entire NHS by 2024.

Since 2018, 216 NHS Trusts have received a share of this fund and the proportion of trusts with an electronic prescriptions and medicines administration (ePMA) system is expected to have risen from 19% in 2018 to more than 80% by March 2021.