We are always looking at ways to improve efficiency and reduce errors. One way we can do that is by replacing the outdated use of paper prescriptions. The NHS is on course to eliminate paper prescriptions in hospitals by 2024, achieving the long term commitment to go digital.
16 trusts across England will receive a share of a £16 million investment to introduce e-prescriptions and benefit from single electronic hospital patient records. By doing so it can in fact improve patient safety by reducing the chance of errors and save staff time, meaning more time will be spent on patients. We all know how difficult it can be sometimes to read handwritten notes and by going digital that is no longer a problem, it is estimated it could reduce medication errors by up to 30%.
Some people in South Derbyshire do use the Nottingham University Hospital and will see these benefits shortly but it will also be rolled out at a later date in the Royal Derby and Burton Hospital as part of the £78 million investment to achieve the NHS long term plan to go digital. I hope to see it on our local hospitals as soon as possible and am pleased at the progress being made in England so far.
By investing now, we will save money in the long term and improve efficiency. I believe we must invest to reap the benefits, not just to improve standards for patients but also to help the work of our fantastic NHS staff.