What is Pharmacy nomination and how does it work?

April 28, 2022
6 minute read
What does Pharmacy nomination mean?  

Patients in England can have their NHS prescriptions sent electronically from their GP to a Pharmacy of their choice through the Electronic Prescription Service (EPS). This is what is called a Pharmacy nomination. It means that you have selected a particular Pharmacy to dispense (and in some cases deliver) your medication. The main benefit of nominating a Pharmacy through the Electronic Prescription Service is that you will no longer need to collect a paper prescription from your GP practice.

Most GP surgeries in England use the Electronic Prescription Service, however we always advise double-checking this with your GP to ensure that you can use this service.

How does Pharmacy nomination work?

Every Pharmacy may have a slightly different process when it comes to nomination. As a patient, you will always be required to give your consent for your nominated Pharmacy to receive your prescription and dispense your medication. Once you have nominated your Pharmacy, this preference will be stored on the NHS database and all of your prescriptions will be sent automatically to your nominated Pharmacy.

It’s worth noting that currently, patients can only nominate one Pharmacy at a time under the Electronic Prescription Service.

At Phlo, we collect consent for nomination during our registration process. Once you consent to nomination at the end of your registration process, all your electronic prescriptions will be sent to Phlo automatically to be dispensed and delivered to the address that you provide.

You can also use other services to set or check your Pharmacy nomination. For example, you can do this in the NHS app.

What are my rights as a patient?  

It is entirely your right as a patient to nominate your Pharmacy, whether that be an online Pharmacy such as Phlo or a ‘bricks-and-mortar' Pharmacy.  

Pharmacies and GP surgeries are not allowed to suggest or persuade a patient to use a particular Pharmacy service, this must be the patient's choice only. GP’s and Pharmacies must respect the patient's choice for their Pharmacy nomination and may not use incentives or offers to influence otherwise.

They also cannot refuse your request to nominate a particular Pharmacy. For patients that would like to nominate Phlo as your Pharmacy and come up against any resistance from GP’s or other Pharmacies, please get in touch with us and we can help you with this.

How do I cancel or change my Pharmacy nomination?  

GP surgeries and Pharmacies can change a patient nominated Pharmacy in person or over the phone. Nominations can only be changed or cancelled at the request of the patient, and you can choose to change or cancel your nomination at any time.  

If you use the NHS app, you will also be able to change your nominated Pharmacy yourself. You can find out more details here.  

A change of Pharmacy nomination comes into effect straight away. This means that any new prescriptions issued by your GP will be sent automatically to your new Pharmacy of choice.

You can also ask your GP surgery to cancel your Pharmacy nomination. In this case, you won’t have any Pharmacy assigned until you nominate a new Pharmacy. Any future prescription requests from your GP will be sent to the NHS spine for any Pharmacy to download and dispense.

If you would like to remove or change your nomination with Phlo, please get in touch with our Pharmacy team and we will be able to help you.  

Some common challenges with Pharmacy nomination

Sometimes you may require an acute (one-off) paper prescription in cases of emergency and need to use a Pharmacy that is not your nominated Pharmacy. This sometimes means that another Pharmacy may change your nomination to their Pharmacy.  

If this happens, this will mean that all your future prescriptions would be sent to this Pharmacy instead. In such a scenario, it’s important to let the Pharmacy team know that you do not want to change your nominated Pharmacy, just that you require a one-off prescription. There is a barcode on the back of every prescription which Pharmacies can scan and download to dispense this for you.  

If your Pharmacy nomination changes, your previous nominated Pharmacy will not be notified to be made aware of this change. Any subsequent prescriptions will automatically be sent to your new nominated Pharmacy through the Electronic Prescription Service.  

We hope you have found this information useful. If you are still unsure about how Pharmacy nomination works, you can read more on the NHS website or get in touch with our Pharmacy team who will be happy to help you.

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