More sites are due to go live with Release 2 of the Electronic Prescription Service over the next few weeks, according to NHS Connecting for Health.

A spokesperson for CfH told EHI Primary Care that the Department of Health is in discussion with Leeds, Nottinghamshire County and North East Lincolnshire primary care trusts and expects to agree dates for a number of sites to go live with EPS R2 over the next few weeks.

CfH said it had so far identified 15 pilot sites and a number of others were under consideration but seeking PCT, local pharmaceutical committee, supplier and pharmacy approval. Two additional PCTs, in Trafford and Sunderland, are also involved in the current early adopter plans.

Three pharmacy systems, Cegedim Rx’s Pharmacy Manager and Nexphase and Rx Systems’ Proscript, have so far achieved technical accreditation and initial implementation approval.

CfH said all pharmacy system suppliers are aiming to achieve initial implementation approval before the end of April.

The only GP system which has achieved initial implementation approval is TPP’s SystmOne, which was used in the first EPS to go live last summer. CfH said the TPP system had now been deployed to a number of pilot sites and expected to achieve approval for full national roll-out by the end of February.

A CfH spokesperson added: “INPS is looking to deploy its system to a pilot site in January and it is also expected that the EMIS Web solution for EPS R2 will be deployed to a pilot site in April.”

Deployment of R2 of EPS is expected to be a focus of attention in the coming year with informatics guidance accompanying the Operating Framework for 2010-11 requiring all PCTs to complete preparations for the implementation of Release 2.