Smartcard roles

Smartcard roles

Appropriate ‘roles’ are applied to newly obtained Smartcards so pharmacy team members can carry out tasks relevant to their job.

Roles control what a pharmacy team member can do and what they can see. The intention is to preserve patient safety and confidentiality.

Updating roles

Administrator/Sponsor overview/powers

Local Smartcard Administrators (LSA) or Sponsors roles can help pharmacy team members with Smartcard matters.

An LSA role can use Care Identity Service (CIS) to assist with unlocking and renewing.

PSNC recommends that each pharmacy branch assigns at least one member to be an LSA.

A Sponsor role once added onto a card, also provides powers to make requests for registration or role changes.

LSAs/Sponsors may be branch managers or the pharmacist-in-charge.

Checking which roles/activities are already on your card

Becoming an Administrator (LSA)/Sponsor

LSAs/Sponsors require:

  • a functioning Smartcard;
  • two Smartcard readers at the Sponsor’s pharmacy premises;
  • understanding of the responsibilities and obligations involved;
  • appropriate training;
  • a face-to-face meeting with the RA; and
  • RA approval.

Sponsor responsibilities

Familiarity with:

  • Roles: Be familiar with the different types of access profiles / CIS positions to approve, and how to support other processes associated with cards.
  • Scope of their sponsor role: Understand which users registrations they can support within the scope of the authority granted to them.
  • Local RA methods: Be aware of the method the local RA use to follow national guidelines and requirements. Sponsors will work with their local RA to maintain access to NHS CRS compliant systems within their area of responsibility consistent with the NHS Confidentiality Code of Practice and Care Record Guarantee.
  • Temp Access Card arrangements.

Identity checks by Sponsors

Sponsors must be assured of the identity for users they sponsor.

The sponsor needs to be assured that the user’s identity has been confirmed beyond reasonable doubt and that the user requires the level of access requested. If they do not know the person, they may need to contact the pharmacist in charge of the pharmacy to confirm with them that the individual requires the requested level of access.

Summary Care Record (SCR)

Pharmacists and Pharmacy technicians at sites going live with SCR, will be in the process of having SCR roles added onto their Smartcard.

RAs will be using this guidance to administer the process.

Sponsor FAQs

Q. Who appoints sponsors and what is the sponsor registration process?
A. The granting of a Smartcard, and appropriate access rights must be undertaken by the local RA by a face-to-face meeting with the prospective sponsor. This includes the sponsor having their identity confirmed by providing photographic identification and proof in the community documentation. The sponsor must also have signed up to the terms and conditions of their Smartcard.

As part of the process, the local Executive Management Team agree with the sponsor which staff they can approve access rights for, the scope of the access rights that the sponsor can issue to an individual and whether a sponsor can support the renewal of Smartcard certificates and unlocking of smartcards.

The local RA has a responsibility to ensure that sponsors are adequately trained and where necessary know how to unlock Smartcards and issue blank backup Smartcards. The local RA will assist sponsors in understanding the Role Based Access Control (RBAC) model.

Q. Can a sponsor approve access rights for staff in different areas?
A. The local executive Management Team is responsible for agreeing which staff a sponsor can approve access rights for.

A sponsor can only sponsor individual staff within a specific area. For example, if an area manager worked across multiple areas, authority to sponsor staff in each of those areas would have to be granted separately by the local RA Executive Management Team in each area.

Q. A pharmacy is based on a GP surgery. Could the sponsor from the GP surgery also sponsor the pharmacy staff access rights to EPS?
A. The local executive Management Team is responsible for agreeing which staff a sponsor can approve access rights for and the scope of those access rights.

It would be possible the sponsor in the GP surgery to be granted authority to sponsor the access rights of pharmacy staff including supporting pharmacy staff in resolving problems such as locked Smartcards.

Q. Does the sponsor need to know the individual who they are approving access rights for (e.g. would a pharmacist sponsor need to know the technician they are sponsoring)?
A. No. It is not necessary for the sponsor to know the individual they are approving access rights for. The sponsor must reassure themselves that the user requires the level of access requested; therefore if they do not know the individual, they may need to contact the pharmacist in charge of the pharmacy to confirm with them that the individual requires the requested level of access.

Roles FAQs

Q. Which roles are applied to pharmacy team members?

A. A user’s role relates to the job role they hold in an organisation, the area in which they perform their duties and their level of involvement in patient care. For example: a community pharmacist may be assigned the following role profile:

  • R8003 Health Professional Access Role
  • T2200 Prescribing and Pharmacy Area of Work

A Pre-Registration Pharmacist may be assigned the following profiles:

  • R8004 Healthcare Student Access Role
  • T2200 Prescribing and Pharmacy Area of Work

A dispensing technician or medicines counter assistant may be assigned the following profiles:

  • R8008 Admin/Clinical Support Role
  • T2200 Prescribing and Pharmacy Area of Work

The additional Activity ‘B0572 Manage Pharmacy Activities’ may be required if the pre-registration pharmacist undertakes any of the following activities ‘Send prescription reimbursement claims to payment authority or update spine if linked to ETP. The additional activity ‘B0825 Amend Patient Demographics’ may be required by pre-registration pharmacists, dispensing technicians, dispensers and medicines counter staff if they are required to update or remove a patient nomination as part of their role. This will be determined locally as deemed appropriate by the Sponsor.


Related resources

For more on preparing/enhancing EPS use the buttons below:

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For more on business continuity (EPS) use the buttons below:

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For more on Smartcards use the buttons below:

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