Community pharmacists can now access patient information more easily after a one-click function was introduced to the Summary Care Record (SCR).

The function allows pharmacy professionals logged in on their Smartcard to click straight through to a selected patient’s SCR, without having to log in separately and complete a manual search.

The new functionality is live across Sonar and Pinnacle advanced services systems1.

Pharmacies can access the Summary Care Record to; check allergies to prevent prescribing errors; check current medications prescribed for emergency supply purposes; check eligibility for services such as a free flu jab.

Tahmina Rokib, pharmacist and clinical lead for digital medicines and pharmacy at NHS Digital, said: “SCR 1-click will allow pharmacists quicker access to critical information when carrying out community pharmacy advanced services. This is a great first step to integrating core clinical tools into systems to make things more efficient for busy health care professionals.

“It would be great to see integration of SCR and other digital tools by more system suppliers in the future so that clinicians can fully reap the benefits.

“Improved access to SCR will support pharmacists to provide better and safer care for patients through more informed decision making due to quicker access to information.”

The NHS Summary Care record was one of the key projects of the National Programme for IT in the NHS. It was intended to create the ‘national’ element of the integrated care records service that it set out to deliver.

News of giving community pharmacists access to the SCR was first reported in 2015.

It is hoped the move will speed up care and reduce the need for phone calls to GP practices, delays to care and the need for referrals to other services, particularly out-of-hours.