NoemaLife and First Databank have announced a partnership aimed at reducing prescribing and medication errors, which will be piloted at two NHS trusts over coming months.

Users of NoemaLife’s Galileo e-prescribing system will have the latest drug information provided by FDB, allowing them to make more accurate prescribing, dispensing and drug administration decisions, a statement from the two companies says.

University Hospital of North Staffordshire NHS Trust will be the first in England to implement the system when it starts a pilot over the next few months, NoemaLife managing director Robyn Tolley told EHI.

It will be followed closely by a pilot at Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust. Both have been awarded funding via the Safer Hospitals Safer Wards Technology Fund to deploy e-prescribing.

“As an EPMA pharmacist, I need to be confident that the information being provided to our clinicians is clinically accurate and up-to-date, whilst being accessible when they need it,” said Atif Ishaq, Worcestershire’s EPMA and pharmacy informatics team leader.

“I am looking forward to working with both suppliers and feel this partnership will be of great benefit to the trust. The combination of an intuitive system with a strong clinical knowledge base will ensure it supports our clinical staff to prescribe, administer and supply medicines safely and effectively.”

The system allows clinical checks including: medicines to medicines interactions; allergies; medicine ingredient duplication and duplicate therapy, to be automatically carried out.

Also, medicines about to be prescribed will be checked against other elements on the patient’s records and if there are any potential clinical problems, the users will be advised.

Tolley said the collaboration with FDB essentially replaces the British National Formulary booklet that doctors carry around in their pocket. By making this electronic, it ensures the most up-to-date advice is available at the clinician’s fingertips.

He said the company has 20 active bids for e-prescribing systems in England and the vast majority have either won tech fund money in the first round or are applying to tech fund2; details of which are due next month.

However, he said the targets for the second round of money have been “diluted” away from e-prescribing to cover the creation of integrated digital care records.

“The initial tranche was great, the second tranche will be less good because it’s somewhat diluted,” he said.