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Refer to Pharmacy

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Refer-to-Pharmacy at ELHT

For further information contact: Alistair Gray, Clinical Services Lead Pharmacist alistair.gray@elht.nhs.uk


Patient Safety AwardsRefer-to-Pharmacy is now a Patient Safety Award winning initiative being the recipient of the Best Emerging Technology or IT award at the 2016 Patient Safety Congress.

Refer-to-Pharmacy allows hospital pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to refer you directly to your community pharmacist for free NHS services such as the New Medicine Service or a Discharge Medication Review.

 Not all referral systems are the same. Most are ineffectual but sound the same in principle. A Model-T Ford and a Ford Focus both have 4 wheels an engine and go from A to B – they sound the same, but they’re not the same –which would you rely on day in and day out to get to work and back.

ELHT started off the referral journey relying on patients taking their discharge letters to their community pharmacists in person – it didn’t work. An article in the Pharmaceutical Journal compares current systems around the world – judge for yourself. A greater exploration of Refer-to-Pharmacy can be found in this article from Pharmacy Magazine.


The screenshot film below illustrates how quickly a referral can be made in hospital. It shows a referral being made in 12 seconds. This means there is no encumbrance to a pharmacy team making referrals – every eligible patient can be referred:


This screenshot film shows more detail of the hospital end of Refer-to-Pharmacy and shows how easy the Find-a-Pharmacy options are to use:


This screen shot film demonstrates the community pharmacy side of Refer-to-Pharmacy and shows how easy and intuitive it is to navigate:


This animation explains the benefits of Refer-to-Pharmacy to health commissioners.


This animation explains the benefits of Refer-to-Pharmacy from the Hospital Pharmacy Team’s point of view.



And this animation explains the benefits of Refer-to-Pharmacy from a Community Pharmacist’s point of view



Watch this screen capture film to see how quick and easy it is to use Refer-to-Pharmacy in hospital to make a referral



Watch the film to see how refertopharmacy and the new Community Pharmacy services work.

Refer to pharmacy

refertopharmacy can send you a reminder of your referral, by text or e-mail, shortly after you leave hospital.

Your community pharmacist will contact you within a few days of you leaving hospital to arrange a convenient time to meet to discuss changes to your medication.

refertopharmacy can also be used to inform your community pharmacist of changes to your medication if you use blister packs, are a care home resident, or it is important to inform your pharmacist of changes to your medication for any other reason.

Find out more about the New Medicine Service by clicking here


Information for health professionals

Watch the film to find out how refertopharmacy can benefit Commissioners, GPs and Community Pharmacists.

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s Referral Toolkit, which helps health economies introduce hospital to community pharmacy referral solutions can be viewed here: www.rpharms.com/referraltoolkit

Watch Alistair Gray’s talk at the North West Coast’s AHSN Medicines Optimisation road show.

The attached PowerPoint slide show runs with a commentary explaining how Refer-to-Pharmacy works in practice.

For anyone interested in clinical pharmacy and medicine optimisation the Clinical Pharmacy Pocket Companion 2nd edition is now available from the Pharmaceutical Press. Click here for further details


Related Sites


12 Second Referral

Hospital Perspective

Community Perspective