Medicinal items are to be listed in the NHS database

Medicinal items are to be listed in the NHS database

There will be occasions where a product cannot be prescribed electronically for technical reasons. For example, this could occur if the product is not listed on the NHS Dictionary of Medicines & Devices or if the prescribing system is not able to issue a prescription for the item because the supplier hasn’t ‘mapped’ the appropriate codes. This is likely to affect less commonly prescribed items including products to be specially manufactured or extemporaneously dispensed products.

Frequently asked questions

Q. I have received an EPS Release 2 electronic prescription however when I try to dispense this, an alert is coming up in my system to indicate that there is “no dm+d mapping”. What does this mean and what should I do?

A. The NHS Dictionary of Medicines and Devices (dm+d) provides a unique code for each medicine and device and is the key to supporting interoperability between pharmacy and GP clinical systems. System suppliers use a variety of drug databases in their systems. Where a supplier has not adopted the NHS dm+d as their core database, they must ‘map’ the codes of the individual products on their database with the dm+d codes.

Where an electronic prescription has been received for an item but the individual pharmacy system supplier has not mapped that item on their drug database with the dm+d code, the system will flag that there is a problem dispensing the product (this alert is worded in different ways in different systems). If this occurs, it is important to contact the supplier’s helpdesk to report the problem. It may be necessary to request a paper prescription as an interim measure until the supplier can arrange for an update to their PMR system database.

It is essential that mapping is accurate. If whilst dispensing a prescription via the service, a pharmacist identifies an incorrect map, for example if the information printed on the token is different from prescribing information shown on the screen, the pharmacist should report it to their system supplier immediately. The incident should also be reported to the National Patient safety Agency (NPSA) using their online reporting form.

Related resources



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