Digitally enabled prescribing in Mallow Primary Healthcare Centre, News Archive 2016

• 20 GPs digitally enabled to prescribe for medical card patients and 3 Pharmacies enabled to process scripts digitally
• Collaboration between GPIT (HSE, ICGP, DoH), CompleteGP, McLernons, Healthlink, PCRS and the IPU
• No need for multi part paperwork or old dot matrix printers
• 1st step in the ePharmacy programme

The HSE and eHealth Ireland are delighted to announce that digital enabled prescribing has gone live in the South region last week (Dec 15th) which enables GPs to transmit a patient’s prescription digitally. Three GP practices are digitally enabled to prescribe scripts for medical card patients. Patients can have their script fulfilled in three pharmacies who are participating in this initiative at present.

The patient can now leave the GP surgery with a new look prescription. This new prescription will have a ‘bar code’ as well as a list of prescription items for the patient. It is now a single document and not the previous multipart document, which had to be printed on old dot matrix printers in the GP surgery. This new process will not only save time but is also good for the environment by not printing multi-part documents.

When the patient goes to the participating pharmacy, the pharmacist will use bar code scanning equipment to scan the script. This provides confirmation that the script has not been amended in any way. The script is dispensed as normal to the patient.

This new system also enables the reimbursement process to be more streamlined. Previously the hard copy paperwork from the multipart form had to be returned to PCRS but now the copy can be communicated digitally.

Richard Corbridge, Chief Information Officer for the HSE and Chief Officer of eHealth Ireland said, “by digitally enabling prescribing in the community, we are taking the first step in the ePrescribing journey. This fits with the strategic thinking outlined by eHealth Ireland. We hope to extend the number of providers that can use this digital prescribing functionality early in 2017. Already we have more than 400 scripts issued digitally with about half of these already dispensed by the pharmacy. This is a good example of where technology can streamline processes and where together with our various stakeholders we can build a better health service for our patients.”

The work stream and solutions for this innovation arose from a challenge issued to eHealth Ireland by the Director General in response to requests from numerous GPs to address the practical problems associated with using old printers and associated paper processes. It is a great example of how the eHealth Ecosystem can deliver real benefits for our health service. The eHealth Ecosystem is a collaboration between multiple parties involved in ehealth in Ireland and is composed of health service staff, service providers and vendors.

Carl Beame founder of CompleteGP (a GP Practice Systems Vendor) said, “Our solution was designed to be run by eHealth Ireland’s Healthlink, the National Messaging Broker used by almost every GP in the country. We are really excited that it has now gone live in the South region. This has been a really great project as the ongoing collaboration between all parties has been excellent.”

For more information on the ePrescribing project visit

Front Photo
Dr David Molony, Mallow Primary Healthcare Practice using digitally enabled prescribing for medical card patients.

Digitally enabled prescribing in Mallow 2
Peter Weedle, Pharmacist, Weedles Pharmacy Mallow processing a digitally enabled script for a medical card patient.

Last updated on: 23 / 12 / 2016