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Electronic Prescription Service - NHS Smartcards


About the Electronic Prescription Service  

Currently in Wales, GPs and other prescribers in primary care, sign paper prescriptions by hand. EPS allows prescribers to send prescriptions electronically to a dispenser such as a pharmacy of the patient’s choice. This makes the prescribing and dispensing process safer, more efficient and convenient for patients and staff.  


Why are NHS smartcards required now? 

EPS sends prescriptions from the GP to the pharmacy via the NHS Spine, and NHS smartcards are required to interact with the Spine. These are the same smartcards used in England, if you have an existing smartcard from England, you do not need to apply again for Wales, any permissions required can be added to your existing card by the Registration Authority Agent/Sponsor in the practice. 


Welsh GP practice and pharmacy staff will be able to access the Electronic Prescription Service functions within their clinical systems, as well as Prescription Tracker, using their smartcard. 


How to get a smartcard

Each GP practice and pharmacy that is live with EPS or is scheduled to go live within three months will have a Registration Authority Agent who can obtain smartcards for staff requiring smartcards and for regular/planned locums.


Further information 

The Registration Authority Agent or Sponsor in any practice live with EPS may be able to answer your queries.  There is also general information about smartcards available here: Smartcard and authenticator users - NHS Digital . If your query relates to smartcard functions in clinical systems, please contact your clinical system supplier.


Logging issues

If you have a smartcard and have an issue which your Registration Authority Agent is unable to assist you with, please log a call using the contact details below and the Registration Authority team will contact you to provide assistance.


For GP practice staff to use:

DHCW Local Service Desk  

Tel: 0333 200 8048   

(7.30am-8pm Mon-Fri, 9am-1pm Sat)  



For pharmacy staff to use:

NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership  

Tel: 02921 500 444

(8am-5pm Mon-Fri)



Electronic Prescription Service Documents


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