Royal Pharmaceutical Society member Emma Williams has collected the 2018 Clinical Pharmacy Congress (CPC) award for Excellence in use of Technology in Pharmacy Practice, on behalf of the NHS Wales Informatics Service (NWIS) Choose Pharmacy project. Williams is the national clinical lead for the Choose Pharmacy IT application, and together with Cheryl Way, the project’s national pharmacy and medicines management lead, forms the Choose Pharmacy clinical team.
The award was presented on 27 April 2018 at the CPC, which was held at ExCel London. It was awarded was for the development of the Choose Pharmacy digital application, which underpins the service.
Choose Pharmacy allows patients with minor ailments to be treated by their community pharmacist, rather than waiting to see a GP. The service also allows patients discharged from hospital to receive medication reviews from pharmacists and to be given an emergency supply of prescribed medicines at evenings and weekends.
To support this, the Choose Pharmacy team developed an application allowing electronic patient records to be transferred between Welsh community pharmacies. Using the application, pharmacists can also access electronic discharge advice letters, which are generated when patients are discharged from hospital. This means that any changes to medication made during a patient’s hospital stay are acted upon when the patient leaves hospital under the care of a community pharmacist.
A pilot currently running across Wales also uses the application to give pharmacists access to Welsh GP records.
“The Choose Pharmacy application supports the development of an integrated model of care,” said Williams. “Currently, it enables community pharmacists to access relevant patient information from NHS Wales’ hospital and GP systems when providing care to improve patient safety and patient outcomes, and to develop new patient pathways — for example, the common ailments service and the emergency medicines service.”
Williams accepted the award on behalf of the whole Choose Pharmacy team, which, in addition to Williams and Way, includes a development team that is responsible for the design and development of new functionality, and an implementation team that is responsible for the roll out of the Choose Pharmacy application across Wales and the development of existing functionality.
“The wider NWIS team contributes to the Choose Pharmacy application in the design, assurance, service management and IT support of the live service. The application could not be a success without the input of these teams and many others,” said Williams.