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NHS launches pilot information service

NHS direct has been running a pilot online information service that provides parents and carers with up-to-date and detailed information about children's prescriptions.

NHS direct has been running a pilot online information service that provides parents and carers with up-to-date and detailed information about children's prescriptions.

The pilot programme has been operating for eight months and NHS Direct announced on April 24 that people are benefiting from the service, which is a joint venture between Evelina Children's Hospital at Guys' and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust in London. Parents and caregivers of children affected by long-term conditions can now obtain personalised information about their medication.

Anne Joshua, NHS director associate director of pharmacy, said: "Consistent, validated, accessible information is needed by parents and carers as part of on-going care."

"The partnership between Guys' and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, community pharmacy and NHS Direct has provided a model for delivering a consistent message to parents and carers about their children's medicines when often information sources can be contradictory and only relevant to adults," she added.

Pharmacists offer patients/carers the option to receive further information about their prescription. Once both parties agree what information should be requested, an online submission is sent to the NHS online enquiry service. Parents/carers receive detailed information compiled by health advisors via email within 24 to 48 hours of the initial requisition.

The pilot scheme was conducted at community pharmacies in London, Manchester and Stoke. NHS direct said that initial results suggest that parents and carers liked the opportunity to have detailed information and discussions with their pharmacist about complex prescriptions.

25th April 2008

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