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NHS England encouraging users to 'Tap the app'

Pharmacy News

NHS England encouraging users to 'Tap the app'

NHS England has  launched a “Tap the app” campaign to promote greater use of the NHS app and its recently introduced new features.

Following a successful trial last year involving over a million users, the new service will allow patients to see when their prescriptions have been issued and view their prescribed medication.

Additionally, users without a nominated pharmacy can use a barcode in the app to collect their prescription from any pharmacy instead of needing a paper version.

Anyone who has a nominated pharmacy can still continue to collect medication without a paper prescription or barcode as details are sent to their pharmacy electronically.

Patients waiting for an elective hospital treatment will also now be able to see the average waiting time for their procedure at their local trust.

NHS England says the number of repeat prescriptions ordered through the app has grown by 45 per cent over the past year, with an average of 3.1 million now requested every month.

Each repeat prescription ordered electronically saves GP practices three minutes of time, it is claimed, with those ordered using the app expected to save the equivalent of 1.85 million hours in 2024. Patients also save an average of 18 minutes with each online order.

“The NHS app is transforming the way people manage their healthcare, freeing up valuable time for healthcare professionals," says Vin Diwakar, national director for transformation at NHS England.

“The prescription service is the latest in a number of services we’re adding to the app to provide better care for patients. I’d encourage anyone who hasn’t used the NHS app for a while, or who has never downloaded it, to tap the app and see what it has to offer.”

As of December 2023, over 75 per cent of adults in England had the NHS app on their mobile phone.

NHS app messaging is now available for 97 per cent of GP Practices, with over 52 million messages sent 2023.

Appointments for Covid-19 and flu vaccines are now available on the app. At the end of November 2023, 24 per cent of appointments were being booked via this route.

NHS 111 Online is now available to all fully verified users.

Around 3.4 million secondary care appointments were viewed and managed via the NHS app in December 2023, around a threefold increase on the year before.

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