A survey exploring National Health Service ePrescribing Toolkit use and perceived usefulness amongst English hospitals

Kathrin Cresswell, Ann Slee, Aziz Sheikh


Background: There is currently limited guidance for hospitals to implement ePrescribing systems. We have developed an ePrescribing Toolkit designed to support ongoing implementation, adoption and optimisation of efforts.

Aim: To investigate the perceived usefulness, reported use and areas for further development of the Toolkit by ePrescribing implementers in English hospitals.

Methods: Questionnaire-based survey of hospitals that have or are interested in implementing ePrescribing systems.

Results: We received responses from a total of 78 individuals representing 49 English NHS Trusts (out of 82 different Trusts who were emailed the survey, 60% response rate). The overwhelming majority of respondents (92%) were familiar with the ePrescribing Toolkit and 66% reported using it to guide their ongoing implementation efforts. The majority of ePrescribing Toolkit users (85%) viewed it as a helpful resource. Implementers particularly valued the case studies describing lessons learnt from hospitals that had already implemented ePrescribing systems. Suggestions for improvement included more information in relation to the progress of hospitals implementing systems, the names of key contacts in these sites, a list of available systems and the contact details of ePrescribing vendors. Respondents also highlighted the need for more information on optimisation and specialist prescribing.

Conclusions: Interactive elements and learning lessons from early adopter sites that had accumulated experiences of implementing systems was viewed as the most helpful aspect of the ePrescribing Toolkit. The Toolkit now needs to be further developed to facilitate the continuing implementation/optimisation of ePrescribing and other health information technology across the NHS.


ePrescribing; survey; implementation

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.14236/jhi.v24i2.905


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