CPCS – IT requirements and support

CPCS – IT requirements and support

The CPCS service specification requires that the pharmacy must have IT equipment accessible within the consultation room to allow contemporaneous records of the CPCS consultations to be made within the CPCS IT system (see below).

As with the provision of all community pharmacy IT hardware, the provision of IT equipment in the consultation room is for the pharmacy contractor to arrange. The costs of IT equipment were included in PSNC’s assessment of costs of providing the service which has informed the agreement on the funding for the CPCS, which included a £900 supplement to the Transition payment if contractors registered to provide the service by 1st December 2019.

Confirming CPCS IT systems 

Until 31st March 2021, contractors providing the service had to use CPCS IT systems made available to them by NHSE&I. NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) previously announced that funding for the Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS) IT systems was extended for an extra period to support the initiation of the service. The national provision of NHS Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS) IT solution ended on 31st March 2022.

From 1st April 2022, pharmacy contractors became responsible for the use of their CPCS IT systems. Since the start of April 2022, contractors have been responsible for choosing their own assured IT system which they will use for the service and responsible for the system within their pharmacy and their use of it. Contractors and CPSC IT suppliers should also ensure they have arranged suitable contractual agreement with each other after the contractor has selected their system.

Previous communications from NHSE&I and PSNC have advised contractors that they should have acted promptly to sign-up to a CPCS IT provider before the end of March 2022 to ensure a smooth transition. If this action has not already been fully completed, contractors should confirm to their supplier of the selection now to ensure there is not risk to CPCS service provision or service continuity.

There are now three pharmacy IT systems available that have been assured by NHS Digital to support the CPCS service, receiving referrals from 111 via ITK/FHIR and GP referrals via NHSmail. These are:

Supplier Supplier comment Status*
Cegedim, video “Pharmacy Services is integrated to Pharmacy Manager to deliver notifications. Integrations with NHS solutions such as PDS for NHS number lookup, MYS for claiming and DoS to forward referrals save time.” Live
PharmOutcomes, video “Referrals will be sent directly from the NHS 111 system into the pharmacy IT platform in use as an ITK message.” Live
Sonar Informatics, video “Our solution is available to all contractors. Register with Sonar and we will provide this module (and our GP CPCS module) for free until April 2023.” Live

*Some suppliers have a solution which is already live and available whilst others are working towards readiness or planning to get ready on or after 1st April 2022. Some suppliers’ solutions will only work as part of a Patient Medication Record (PMR) system.

Positive Solutions (Analyst PMR system) status is set out below.

Supplier Supplier comment Status*
Positive Solutions, video “HxConsult integrates with the Positive Solutions Analyst system to create an end-to-end solution that lets you manage the referral process seamlessly, from receiving a prominent alert, to automatically informing the patient’s GP and generating the payment claim.” Positive Solutions (Analyst PMR system) are also progressing through the final stages of the test and assurance process with interested users of their system (around 30 users so far) and hope to have their CPCS assured solution more widely available very soon. Users of this system are able to enquire whether they can take part with the testing or early rollout

An integrated referral capability for GP CPCS referrals is now being prioritised for delivery in 2022/23 from both GP online consultation suppliers and GP Foundation system suppliers. Further information will be shared in due course. In the interim, NHSmail remains the minimum viable product to support these referrals. Software systems will need to meet the CPCS IT standards set by the NHS. These standards will be reflected in the NHS CPCS Technical Toolkit.

See also:  The ‘CPCS/CPCF IT & clinical suppliers’ section of the Supplier list webpage.

Switching guide

CPCS IT Provider ‘Switching’ guide (NHSE&I pdf) (new)

Buyer’s Guide for CPCS IT

NHS Transformation Directorate and partner organisations have published a Buyer’s Guide. This was developed with the support of PSNC. It sets out the options and actions required in the move to the CPCS ‘provider pays’ model and will help contractors choose the best provider for them.

Read the new CPCS Buyer’s Guide (NHS Transformation Directorate .docx file) (new)

Past webinars

NHSE&I, with the support of PSNC, organised two webinars on this subject  (on 14th October 2021 and 22nd July 2021). These webinar opportunities were promoted via news updates and pharmacy contractors and LPCs had the opportunity to hear from the four IT suppliers and see the IT solutions in action. For more information about the events or the CPCS IT technical toolkit, please contact: digitalpodac@nhsx.nhs.uk.


Q. Why were systens funded by NHSE&I prior to April 2022?

A. The decision that NHSE&I would lead on commissioning this IT support for the temporary period (ending 31st March 2022), as opposed to the normal situation of contractors purchasing the IT support themselves, was driven by the relatively short time in which to get the service implemented ahead of the winter period of peak activity for primary and urgent care services and the need for data to be available to the NHS from all pharmacies providing the service to support implementation of the service and its evaluation.

Further information

CPCS clinical record data



Last updated: 9th May 2022

Return to the CPCS hub page or return to Pharmacy IT


Latest Services and Commissioning news

View more Services and Commissioning news >

Have you completed the DMS DoC?

Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are reminded that they must complete the Discharge Medicines Service (DMS) Declaration of Competence (DoC) before...