The role of digital transformation to improve lives: Ann Slee

13th April 2022

With digital transformation being at the heart of the NHS recovery plan, implementing,  developing and optimising ePrescribing and digital medicines systems is a shared challenge, and collaboration will enable us all to move forward further and quicker.  To bring teams together and share learning, the Medicines Optimisation Digital Learning Network is hosting the virtual ‘Transforming Lives with Digital Medicines’ event on the 27th of April. A ‘must attend’ for anyone involved in ePrescribing or digital medicines systems, the event features national speakers including NHS England’s Association Chief Clinical Officer (Medicines), Ann Slee. Ann has worked in the digital medicines space for a number of years, championing the use of digital systems to transform patient care. Here, she shares her views on the role and importance of digital systems and the benefits of attending the upcoming event.


I’m looking forward to bringing the network together on the 27th of April, to share learning and experiences since we last met. Attendees will have the opportunity to tell us what they need from future sessions and we’ll also be providing updates on work happening nationally, including the latest research in the digital medicines arena. There’s much we can learn and discuss collaboratively to look at the future and to think about optimising systems and improving patient care. Some of the key benefits of digital systems are in reducing the risk of medication-related errors, supporting strategies to reduce overprescribing and medicines optimisation and enabling the transformation of services to improve efficiencies and most importantly providing the right support for patients. We are now at a stage where the final pieces of paper and the need to chase information to support medicines reconciliation can be transformed using digital systems, as the standards and technology are available. In practice this means that a patient’s complete medication information will be available at the point of care, supporting clinical (and care) staff as well as patients, to optimise and personalise the use of medicines. Not only will it improve patient outcomes, efficiencies and safety; it will also reduce medicines wastage and help to improve sustainability. This in turn will help to address health inequalities by having further integration and improving access to healthcare services. When we meet later this month, we will have the opportunity to share best practices and discover how Trusts are already implementing digital systems. For example, we’ll hear about a Trust about to go live with a system that supports medicines reconciliation on admission, pulling information into their ePrescribing system in a manner that reduces and removes the need to re-input data. Another example will demonstrate how medication requests do not need to be transcribed between an ePrescribing and stock control system.


I hope all attendees come away with the confidence and enthusiasm to drive innovation and transformation in the field of ePrescribing and digital medicines. We can learn from each other and there are some great networks and resources available to support everyone. The national team is here to help – please use us!


The only barrier remaining is ourselves – and that’s why I’m so excited to welcome everyone back to the network to drive forward change and remind ourselves of the huge potential digital medicines have to transform lives. My final piece of advice to anyone implementing digital systems is to make sure that you bake standards in at the outset, and remember – you are on a journey.

The event is open to all teams from acute, mental health and community services who are leading or involved in ePMA or digital medicines systems implementation, and to suppliers. Registration is open for the event and can be found here.

For further information contact [email protected]