PharmacyA patient’s medication history can be accessed faster thanks to a staff-led initiative at Royal Surrey County Hospital.

The project has seen electronic smartcards introduced into our pharmacy, which can provide access to key information from a patient’s GP record.

When people are admitted to hospital and need unplanned care, doctors and the ward pharmacy team need to quickly find out what medication they have been routinely taking in order for it to be prescribed and administered in a timely manner.

Previously, when a patient was unable to confirm their medication, staff would contact their GP and request a patient summary be faxed over, which could take some time.

Now thanks to the new smartcards, staff can access NHS England’s Summary Care Record in a matter of minutes.

This database contains important information about any current and recently discontinued medication patients are taking, any medication allergies they suffer from and any adverse reactions to medicines that they have previously taken.

A total of 50 smartcards have been issued to the Trust’s pharmacists and pharmacy technicians.

These can then be inserted into a smartcard reader on their computer giving them access to the national database.

This process is completed with the patient’s permission whenever possible.

Anita Counter, Lead Technician Medicines Management, said: “The introduction of the smartcards in the Trust helps us to ensure medication is reconciled, prescribed and ordered in a more timely manner giving patients the best possible care.”

Chief Executive Peter Dunt said: “This is a fantastic example of how our extremely dedicated staff are always looking for ways to improve the patient care and experience we offer.

“A great team effort, involving staff from pharmacy, IT and Human Resource, has helped make this possible.”

©2019 Royal Surrey County Hospital

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