NEWS The IT Crowd
IT IS GREAT TO SEE THAT PHARMACY IT IN THE UK CONTINUES TO MOVE ON AT PACE.
I was interesting to hear the words of Dr Shaun O’Hanlon the Chief Medical Officer of EMIS at a recent event in Lisburn where he talked about “those at the centre of all IT integration”.
He didn’t refer to this group as “the patient” or even “the customer”, but as “the citizen”. I assume the frame of reference was born from the need to address Health Care integration with the “citizen” in control of the information, which ultimately should be shared with stakeholders for their benefit.
If we view this in contrast to the current isolation in selected pockets of healthcare in NI, (where it’s not uncommon for patients who visit secondary care to be expected to highlight their interactions with primary care and vice versa) it’s clear we have some way to go to getting to a gold standard model.
As we have been told many times in the recent past, “Empowering the patient” is at the centre of NI Health Care and with the assembly looking to
ensuring the NI tax payer receives value for money under the Transforming Your Care model, it more critical than ever that we strive towards an integrated IT solution for all parties involved.
This agenda is rapidly gathering pace in across the water in England. 4 weeks ago it was confirmed by the Pharmacy Minister Alistair Burt that “up to £7.5 million” would be invested in “giving community pharmacists the training and tools they need to access a patient’s SCR (Summary Care record), This would “allow pharmacists to deliver “better informed and tailored care”. This is not a long term aspiration; plans are looking to be implemented this autumn.
Scotland are also watching with a keen eye. Only last week various Scottish pharmacy stakeholders have been calling for the same access to patients SCR’s as they can see the value to the patient in not only viewing, but (more importantly) utilising this information.
Having access to this patient centric information is one of the reasons that Numark have a relationship with EMIS
Health (formerly Rx Systems). With over 65% of GP surgeries in NI operating an EMIS system, the opportunity to share the type of information discussed in the SCR is closer than it has ever been.
Other pharmacies in the UK are now doing this to some very positive results. The roll out of EMIS Web to NI EMIS surgeries in the coming months will mean the opportunity for this interconnectivity is close than ever before.
By utilising IT, as well as the obvious benefit of a more effective Healthcare system for the “citizen”, it should also
Driving up Profit Event
MCLERNON COMPUTERS AND REAL WORLD RETAIL (RWR) WILL BE HOLDING AN UNMISSABLE EVENT FOR ALL COMMUNITY PHARMACISTS WISHING TO DRIVE UP THEIR PROFITS AND MAXIMISE THE ECONOMIC POTENTIAL OF THEIR PHARMACIES.
Pharmacy in Focus are the exclusive Media Partner.
Every year, and every health budget, brings more challenges for community pharmacy contractors. Increasing script volumes, coupled with laborious claims processes mean that contractors
have fewer hours in which to stand back and assess their business, review their retail offering and maximise their profits.
‘Driving Up Your Profits’ has been put together using the best speakers who will share their business experiences of getting the most out of your pharmacy – from clever purchasing to accurate dispensing, detailed stock-taking to category management, optimisation of staff resources and store development. The one-day event will take place in in Malone House, Belfast on Thursday 22nd October 2015.
Keith McLernon said, “We are delighted to partner Real World Retail in bringing this event to Northern Ireland. They have held two such similar events in the South, which were extremely well-attended and generated much positive feedback.
“Pharmacists are recognised as being experts in pharmacology and the delivery of pharmaceutical care, but business skills are not part of the undergraduate curriculum. We work closely with rwr with our Southern customers and have seen at first hand
the real benefits that they can bring to a business.”
Conall Lavery, rwr, said, “McLernons are the largest pharmacy IT vendors on the island of Ireland, with market- leading solutions both in the dispensary and in retail. I believe that if this event is half as successful as previous events we have held, then every single pharmacist who attends will bring home at least three new ideas to apply to their business for its betterment.”
See page 43 for further details. QUB School of Pharmacy Graduating Class of 2015
help further cement a successful relationship between a Pharmacy and its local surgeries, which naturally is vital to the long term sustainability of any pharmacy.
With the much quoted “up to 50% of medicines dispensed are wasted” figure still at the forefront of much of pharmacy’s long term strategy, IT should be able to help towards us looking to reduce this figure. Maybe in this case, a problem shared could well be a problem halved!
Wayne Harrison is Numark’s Member Services Manager.
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