Changes to the way you order repeat prescriptions in Wirral
In this section
From summer 2017, the way you order your repeat prescriptions changed. GP practices can no longer accept repeat prescription requests from pharmacies.
You (or your carer, nominated family member/friend) must order your repeat prescription from your GP practice. Please click on each tab below for more information which explains what the changes mean for you.
Please note these changes are in relation to the ordering process only - pharmacies are still able to collect prescriptions from GP practices; receive prescriptions electronically and deliver medications and other items to your home. Please speak to your pharmacy directly about the services they provide.
A repeat prescription allows you to get your regular medication without having to see a doctor each time.
There are different ways for patients to order their repeat prescriptions.
Some patients manage their own repeat prescriptions by placing their requests with their GP Practice or by ordering them online. However, other patients use a pharmacy to place their repeat prescription order on their behalf.
You (or your carer/nominated family member/friend) will have to order the repeat prescription from your GP practice.
The prescription will need to be ordered using one of the following options:
- Drop off or post to the order slip into your GP practice – the order slip is the white, tear off part of your repeat prescription (see image below) selecting only the items you need. If you don’t have your slip please put your request in writing listing the medications you require (this should include the full name and strength)
- Ordering online* - it is easier than you think and the practice will help you to set this up.
- Mobile applications* – Free mobile apps (such as patient access) are available to download on your smartphone. Once downloaded you can order your repeat prescriptions from the mobile app.
Unfortunately, practices are unable to take prescription requests over the phone as mistakes are more likely due to:
- Confusion with drug name pronunciation
- Errors made when writing out the request
*Online/Mobile applications are not yet available at all Wirral GP practices. If your GP practice does offer one or both of these services then you may need to present identification to your GP practice in order to set this up. Please contact your practice for more information.
Community pharmacies provide a number of services:
- Collect prescriptions from GP practices
- Receive prescriptions electronically
- Deliver medications and other items to you
Always speak to your pharmacy first to check which services they provide.
The quickest and easiest way to order repeat medication is via Patient Access, either online or via the app - https://www.patientaccess.com/
- Check how many days of medication you have left before ordering your medication.
- You will need to order your repeat medication from your GP practice when you have 7 days of medication left.
- It usually takes the GP practice 2-3 working days to issue a prescription.
- Once the pharmacy receives your prescription it can take them 48 hours to prepare it.
- Remember to only order the medication you need for the month.
- You don’t need to order medication every month for it to stay on repeat prescription.
- If you would like your prescription to be sent electronically then speak to your pharmacy or your GP practice.
- Speak to your pharmacy about what services they offer e.g. prescription collection and delivery.
- If your prescription is not sent electronically, and neither yourself or a representative can collect it from the GP practice, speak to your pharmacy to see if they can collect it and let them know when you have ordered it.
- The prescriptions for some medicines, for example, strong painkillers e.g. tramadol, morphine and fentanyl cannot presently be sent electronically to the pharmacy. This is expected to change but, currently, they will be printed and will need to be collected from your surgery. On collection, by yourself, a representative or by your pharmacy, there will be extra checks in place and a signature may also be required.
- Please speak to your GP practice if you are unable to order your repeat medication yourself, or you don’t have someone else who can help you, or if your circumstances change.
- For further information on patient led ordering please visit the NHS Wirral CCG website at; https://www.wirralccg.nhs.uk/your-health-and-services/changes-to-the-way-you-order-repeat-prescriptions-in-wirral/
If your repeat medication is not in sync, speak to your GP practice or complete the prescription alignment form.
If you feel you might need support ordering your repeat prescription or you know someone who might need help; please contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on:
- 0800 054 2137 (freephone) or 0151 363 3948
- or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- or post to: PALS Wirral Information Resource for Equality and Diversity Ltd (WIRED), Unit 7, Wirral Business Park, Arrowe Brook Road Upton, Wirral CH49 1SX
The PALS service is open Monday-Friday 9am-4.30pm.
If you are worried about the impact of this change on yourself or someone else please contact your GP practice.
To download the patient information leaflet please click here.
Check Before You Tick campaign
NHS England and the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) have launched the 'Check Before You Tick’ campaign to help people understand their eligibility for free prescriptions.
The campaign encourages patients to check whether they are entitled to free prescriptions before claiming them to help reduce the £256 million cost per year to the NHS when people incorrectly claim them for free.
Patients will be able to access a new online tool to help everyone to understand eligibility criteria for free prescriptions, and pharmacists will also be helping to raise awareness.
Anyone incorrectly claiming a free prescription risks a penalty charge of up to £100 from the NHS Business Services Authority which carries out prescription checks each month.
Patients are entitled to free prescriptions if: they are under 16 years old or 16, 17 or 18 and in full time education, or over 60. Certain illnesses can also exempt a patient from prescription charges as well as being pregnant or having a baby under one year.
Certain benefits, but not all, qualify people for free prescriptions, so it’s important that patients check their entitlement, and pharmacists should support them with this and ask to see up-to-date proof of eligibility.
Pregnant women and new mothers, although eligible to claim free prescriptions, may not always realise they need a valid Maternity Exemption Certificate.
Without a valid certificate, they too could receive a penalty charge.
For individuals who experience financial difficulties but are not eligible for free prescriptions, there are other means of support available to them and pharmacists should help advise, such as prepayment certificates and the NHS low income scheme.
Further advice to help protect patients and the NHS from the consequences of incorrect claims for free prescriptions, can be found in the ‘Check Before You Tick’ pharmacy communications toolkit available on the Public Health England website.
The online eligibility checker can be accessed on the NHS website: www.nhs.uk/checkbeforeyoutick.