Prescriptions Handling

Repeat prescribing is being encouraged to support COVID-19


Purpose : Prescriptions containing personal identifiable and health data will be shared with chemists/pharmacies, in order to provide patients with essential medication or treatment as their health needs dictate. This process is achieved either by face to face contact with the patient or electronically. Where patients have specified a nominated pharmacy they may wish their repeat or acute prescriptions to be  ordered and sent directly to the pharmacy making a more efficient process. Arrangements can also be made with the pharmacy to deliver medication


Legal Basis : Article 6(1)(e); “necessary… in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller’ And Article 9(2)(h) as stated below


Patients will be required to nominate a preferred pharmacy.


Processor – Pharmacy of choice

There are four types of prescription which follow slightly different processes. In order to reduce confusion and enhance patient understanding, the following chart explains each process and clarifies the patient’s role.


Type of prescription


Your role as a patient






One off prescription

You visit your Health Professional who prescribes a one-off medication eg antibiotics.  Your Health Professional immediately provides you with a paper copy prescription so that you can take it to any pharmacy who will dispense the medication.  


The Health Professional sends the prescription electronically to your nominated pharmacy so that you can collect your medication. 

  Visit Health Professional.

  Take the hard copy prescription to any pharmacy.


  Collect medication from nominated pharmacy 







Ad hoc repeat prescription

You require the same medication on an on-going basis, but the frequency of medication is subject to change eg medication for migraine or hay fever. When you are running short of medication, you can request a repeat (online or via hard copy into surgery) at least 7 days prior to the end of your supply. The prescription will be issued electronically to your nominated pharmacy.

  Request repeat prescription (hard copy or online) at least 7 days prior to need.

  Collect medication from  nominated pharmacy. 







Repeat prescription

You require regular medication while your GP monitors progress. When you run out of medication you need to request more from your GP. (This can be done electronically or by a paper request.)  Your GP approves and sends the request to the pharmacist who dispenses the medication.  Sometimes your GP will request to see you before approving more medication and you will need to make an appointment with the GP/ practice nurse / practice pharmacist.

This process is for patients who are trying out a new drug, have an unstable condition or frequent admissions to hospital, or who are on drugs that require careful monitoring.

  Collect medication from nominated pharmacy. 

  Each batch of medication will be numbered, eg 1/6, 2/6 etc

  You will receive a reminder when approaching the end of the pre-approved period so that you know to make another GP appointment.











Course of repeat prescriptions


Also known as 

Electronic Repeat Dispensing, eRD or Batch

This process is for patients with stable/long term conditions, where there have been no changes in the last 6 months, none anticipated and no recent unplanned hospital admissions.

You consent to a course of prescriptions for 6-12 months and for your records to be shared with the pharmacist.

Your GP authorizes a number of repeat prescriptions which will be supplied to you by your pharmacist at regular intervals.

When you collect your first prescription you will need to discuss with your pharmacist when and how to order your next prescription.


You will not need to see your GP or request the next prescription from your GP until the end of your course of prescriptions.


Each time you visit the pharmacy the pharmacist will ask 4 questions:

·         Have you seen any health professionals (GP, nurse or hospital doctor), since your last repeat prescription was supplied?

·         Have you recently started taking any new medicines - either on prescription or that you have bought over the counter?

·         Have you been having any problems with your medication or experiencing any side effects?

·         Are there any items on your repeat prescription that you don’t need this month?

When your pharmacist supplies your final prescription in the course, you will be advised to contact your Health Professional again. (Your GP or practice nurse / practice pharmacist may want to see you to review your medication before authorising anymore.)


  Visit Health Professional every six or twelve months.   

  Visit nominated pharmacy when agreed and answer the Pharmacist’s 4 questions.

  Collect medication.

  If you don’t need all medicines on the prescription, let the pharmacy know, so that they only supply the medicines you need. This will help to reduce waste and save the NHS money.

  Remember to make another appointment with your Health Professional as soon as you receive the final medication. 

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