The Professional Record Standards Body (PRSB) has published the first stage of a new standard to improve the quality of clinical information shared between community pharmacies and GP practices.

The PRSB, the organisation tasked with developing standards for digital health and care records, published the standards on 31 October.

They detail what information should be recorded about vaccinations that have been administered and emergency medicines supplied by community pharmacies.

They also provide more comprehensive data for service planning, commissioning and public health initiatives.

Stephen Goundrey-Smith, Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s advisor to the PRSB and a clinical lead, said: “Pharmacists are offering an increased range of services.

“As such, it will become increasingly important for pharmacists to share vital information about patient care with GPs. By doing this digitally, we can ensure that care professionals have timely access to relevant information, leading to better, safer and more personalised care.

“This sharing of data will also demonstrate the value of pharmacists’ professional input into patient care.”

It is hoped the standards will reduce medication errors, improve patient safety and reduce administrative work for busy staff.

Plus, over time it should help eliminate the use of paper templates.

Vishen Ramkisson, senior clinical lead for medicines and pharmacy at NHS Digital, said: “The data standard is the first step towards ensuring relevant information about services provided by community pharmacies can be shared digitally with other health professionals so that patients’ health records are complete and comprehensive.

“Ensuring IT systems across the NHS can securely share information in a common language is key to this, and we hope that GP and pharmacy IT suppliers choose to develop their systems to use this new standard.”

The PRSB is working on the second stage of the standards, due to be published in Spring 2019.

These standards will cover:

  • Medication Reviews
  • Appliance Use Review
  • New Medicine Services
  • Digital Minor Illness Referral Scheme
  • Hospital discharge summaries to community pharmacies