Greater Manchester

Community Pharmacy Access to the GM Care Record

Health Innovation Manchester is developing a project to provide community pharmacists access to a patient’s full medical record to boost the quality and safety of prescribing in the community.

Community pharmacies can currently access patient information through a system called the National Care Record (NCR). The NCR is an electronic record that contains limited information about a patient’s health. However, there are a number of limitation with the current system for accessing patient health care records through the NCR including:

  • Not all pharmacies having access to the NCR, so some may not be able to view a patient’s complete health care record.
  • Concerns raised about the NCR and the potential for unauthorised access to patient information.
  • Instances where the NCR has not been up to date with the most recent information about a patient, which can lead to errors in treatment.
  • Not all data from GP and Secondary Care records are included in the NCR which pharmacists would find beneficial to inform patient care.

This project aims to provide community pharmacists’ access to a patients’ full health and care record through the GM Care Record that will aim to provide the following benefits:

  • Improved patient care: Community pharmacists can make more informed decisions about the medications they prescribe when they have access to a patient’s full care record.
  • Increased patient satisfaction: Most patients expect healthcare professionals to have access to their data and feel more confident in the care they are receiving when they do. This can lead to increased patient satisfaction with the pharmacy and the wider health & care system.
  • Improved medication safety: Community pharmacists can use a patient’s care record to identify potential drug interactions and contraindications, helping to improve medication management and prevent adverse drug reactions.
  • Increased efficiency: Access to a patient’s care record will help community pharmacists dispense medications more quickly and accurately – in some instances without having to wait for responses from the GP, alleviating the pressures on both pharmacists and practices.
  • Increased communication: Community pharmacists can communicate more effectively with other members of the health and care teams when they have access to a patient’s care record. This helps improve the overall coordination of care a patient receives.
  • Accessing data securely and confidentiality: The GM Care Record is protected from unauthorised access access to the GMCR will comply with all relevant laws and regulations.

This project commenced in early 2023 with a proof of value amongst a number of pilot pharmacies to be live in late-Summer 2023.

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