Quality Payments – NHS website (NHS.UK) entry

Quality Payments – NHS website (NHS.UK) entry

To be eligible to collect the points necessary to claim a Quality Payment, community pharmacy contractors must meet five gateway criteria, one of which is that:

‘On the day of the review, the NHS.UK entry, including bank holiday opening hours for the pharmacy must be up to date.’

Click on a heading below for more information.

NHS England guidance

NHS England has published guidance for the February 2019 review point of the Quality Payments Scheme. The new guidance should be read in conjunction with NHS England’s previously published gateway criteria and quality criteria guidance:

  • NHS England – Pharmacy Quality Payments Gateway Criteria Guidance (published 23rd December 2016); and
  • NHS England – Pharmacy Quality Payments Quality Criteria Guidance (published 27th February 2017).

These documents are available on the NHS England website.

The NHS website (NHS.UK)

The NHS website NHS.UK (www.nhs.uk) (formerly known as NHS Choices) was initially launched in 2007 and is the official website of the NHS in England. With over 48 million visits per month, it has become the UK’s biggest health website accounting for a quarter of all health-related web traffic.

The NHS website contains a directory of services available to patients which can be searched to identify services that are appropriate to the individual. Community pharmacies are listed on this directory and they have been able to register to self-manage the content of most of their individual NHS website profile for several years.

How to achieve this gateway criterion

To meet the gateway criterion contractors are required to edit or validate three sections of their NHS website (NHS.UK) profile between 00:00 on 3rd December 2018 and 23:59 on 15th February 2019. The three sections are:

  • their opening hours, including the following Bank Holidays:
  • Friday 19th April 2019 Good Friday
    Sunday 21st April 2019 Easter Sunday*
    Monday 22nd April 2019 Easter Monday
    Monday 6th May 2019 Early May bank holiday
    Monday 27th May 2019 Spring bank holiday
  • the facilities the pharmacy provides; and
  • the services the pharmacy provides.

*Although Easter Sunday is not officially a bank holiday, NHS England has requested that contractors add their opening hours for this date to assist local NHS England teams and DoS leads so they know which pharmacies will be open over the Easter weekend.

All three sections will need to have been edited or validated for the contractor to meet the NHS website gateway criterion, which is a requirement, to be eligible to then claim for a Quality Payment based on the quality criteria they meet. Even if all three sections are correct, contractors will still need to log into their profile and validate this information during the above time period.

A User Guide for managing NHS website profiles to support the Quality Payments Scheme is available on the NHS website (the User Guide can be found by scrolling to the bottom of the NHS website page and is listed under the ‘User guides’ section as ‘Pharmacy Quality Payments Scheme user guide for February 2019 declaration’) which provides step-by-step instructions on how to edit or validate a pharmacy’s NHS website profile.

Once a contractor has updated the three sections of their NHS website profile, they are advised to visit the patient facing page of their NHS website profile. By doing this, an additional check can be carried out to ensure the information and the dates listed on the page (which show when the sections were last updated) have changed to the date when the contractor edited and/or validated their profile. If possible, taking a screen shot of the three sections once they have been edited and/or validated would also be useful, so this information can be retained as evidence of having met the gateway criterion.

Any inaccuracies between a contractor’s NHS website profile and their contractual opening hours, facilities and the services provided is the responsibility of the contractor. As this is a gateway criterion, an inaccurate NHS website profile may then jeopardise the entire payment claimed for under the Quality Payments Scheme.

Services provided at the pharmacy

Contractors must update or validate their list of services which is displayed in the ‘services’ section of their NHS website profile.

Services are classified into the following three sections:

Pharmacy services Advanced Services and other services which are useful for patients to know about. Essential Services will be included on profiles in due course and these will be auto-populated onto each pharmacy profile
Pharmacy (NHS) services Services commissioned by local authorities or Clinical Commissioning Groups
Pharmacy (Non-NHS) services Patient-funded services (private services)

Contractors who plan to declare to the NHS BSA that they are offering either Medicines Use Reviews or the New Medicine Service or both services under the Advanced Services gateway criterion must also ensure that the service is visible on their NHS website profile.

Registering for profile editing rights or requesting a lost password

Contractors that do not have editing rights to their profile, will need to email the NHS website service desk (nhswebsite.servicedesk@nhs.net). It is preferable for this email request to come from the pharmacy’s premises shared NHSmail account, as use of other email accounts may lead to a delay in editing rights being granted, while the validity of the request for editing rights is confirmed. To apply for editing rights, contractors should supply the below information, ideally by copying and pasting the table below into an email and completing the required information.

The code ‘QPSAPPLICATION’ should be added to the subject line of the email; failure to add the code to the subject line may result in a processing delay and increase the risk of a failure to achieve this gateway criterion.

Email address (preferably the pharmacy premises shared NHSmail account): (This will be used as your username on the website).
Telephone number:
Job title:
ODS code:

Contractors who request their editing rights before the end of the day on 8th February 2019 via their premises shared NHSmail account, will be assured of having these enabled. Any requests after this deadline, or requests made via non-NHSmail accounts increase the risk of a contractor not obtaining editing rights in time, which could result in non-compliance with the gateway criteria. Any NHS website service desk ticket created after 8th February 2019 will not be accepted as mitigation for not meeting the NHS website gateway criterion of the February 2019 declaration.

If a contractor has lost their password, they can request a new password on the NHS website.

NHS website (NHS.UK) profile – not listed on the website

Contractors that have a pharmacy which is not listed on the NHS website (not including distance selling pharmacies) should contact their local NHS England team. An NHS website profile is set up following authorisation from the local team. Making the local team aware that a profile has not been set up will then initiate this process. As soon as your profile is set up you will need to follow the instructions above.

Contractors with multiple pharmacies

Contractors with multiple pharmacies will need to decide whether to complete the review of NHS website profiles at head office or pharmacy level. Each profile is specific to that pharmacy and when a profile is edited or validated, staff will need to ensure that the pharmacy details submitted are accurate for that particular pharmacy at the time of completion. Any inaccuracies that result from editing by head offices and local pharmacy teams will be the responsibility of the contractor.

Distance selling pharmacies - How to achieve this gateway criterion

NHS website profile – already listed on the website

Contractors will be required to:

  1. Check the name of their pharmacy on the NHS website – it must be the trading name rather than the registered company name (unless the registered company name is the same as the trading name);
  2. Check the address, telephone number and website URL on their profile;
  3. Check the provision of EPS is correctly indicated on their profile; and
  4. Email the NHS  website service desk (nhswebsite.servicedesk@nhs.net) including “QPSFEBREVIEW” and the pharmacy ODS code in the subject line, and confirming in the body of the email that the current information is correct or providing the correct information.

Failure to add the ODS code or “QPSFEBREVIEW” in the subject line will result in the email not being recorded in the NHS website summary report to NHS England of DSP contractors who have achieved this gateway criteria; and the contractor failing the validation process.

DSPs will need to send their email to the NHS website service desk between 00:00 on Monday 3rd December 2018 and 11:59pm on Friday 15th February 2019.

NHS Choices profile – not listed on the website

DSP contractors that are not listed on the NHS website should email the service desk (including ‘UNABLETOVERIFYPROFILE’ in the subject line) with the following information:

  • Pharmacy name
  • ODS code
  • Address
  • Telephone number
  • Website URL
  • EPS enabled (Yes/No)

DSPs will need to send their email to the NHS website service desk between 00:00 on Monday 3rd December and 11:59pm on Friday 15th February 2019.

Once this information has been received by the service desk this will count as passing the gateway criteria.

If a DSP contractor finds they are listed within the community pharmacy section of the NHS website they should email the service desk following the steps outlined above and inform them that they are listed in the incorrect section of the website.

Contractors can check if they are listed in the ‘internet pharmacy’ section of the NHS website by using the DSP directory.

The declaration process

 Contractors will be required to declare through the NHS BSA online declaration portal (the portal will go live on Monday 4th February 2019 at 9am and will be available until Friday 1st March 2019 at 11.59pm) that they have edited and/or validated their NHS website (NHS.UK) entry.

Distance Selling Pharmacy (DSP) contractors

DSP contractors will be required to declare through the NHS BSA online declaration portal (the portal will go live on Monday 4th February 2019 at 9am and will be available until Friday 1st March 2019 at 11.59pm) that they have sent an email to the NHS website (NHS.UK) service desk.

Validation of criterion

Contractors are advised to check the validation report, on the NHS BSA website, to ensure that they have met the NHS website gateway criterion. The report will be published regularly during the review window (the publication schedule will be posted on the NHS BSA website by 30th November 2018).

The report will highlight which pharmacies have successfully edited or validated their opening times, service and facilities information within the review window, at the time the report was collated. Contractors will still need to ensure that the Advanced Service information in the report is consistent with their declared service provision for the Advanced Services gateway criterion. If it is not, it will need to be amended so the relevant service information in their profile is included otherwise the contractor will not meet this criterion.


FAQs on the Quality Payments Scheme are available on the Quality Payments – FAQs page.

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