New low-priority measures approved

Yesterday (27 June), NHS England completed its consultation on an additional proposed set of products being considered for a recommendation against regular use in primary care. Therefore, on the site we have now included these new items in the set of low-priority measures. The newly added products include bath and shower emollients, higher cost insulin pen needles and dronedarone. See how your practice or CCG is performing on these measures here, or navigate to the Low Priority measures from your favourite organisation’s dashboard.

New features on the Analyse page

As a result of user feedback we have added some exciting new features to the Analyse page:

We have added STPs and NHS Regions to the organisational highlighting button. This will complement the dashboards we have previously built for every single one of these organisations.

You can now search at multiple levels of the BNF hierarchy in one search. This is helpful when equivalent items of interest have been categorised at different levels of the BNF. For example quinolones, cephlasporins and co-amoxiclav.

Read more in our blog.

New! All England email alerts

You may already receive our innovative custom email alerts for practice and CCG prescribing measures (see blog here), for price concessions, or for custom analyses. If so, you’ll be receiving alerts that tell you as soon as your prescribing starts to change in comparison to peers: this allows you to take any required action at the earliest possible opportunity. Prompted by user feedback, we have now developed this service for the national picture. You can read more about this new feature in our blog.

To sign up, just go to the All England page and enter your email address in the box beside the measures categories (see screenshot below).

We are keen for any feedback on these new alerts, and on the regional or STP dashboards. As always, you can contact us anytime at feedback@openprescribing.net.

New CCGs April 2019

With April’s data release you will now see all of your practices mapped onto any newly formed CCGs throughout the OpenPrescribing site. This is much harder than you might think, partly because of challenges in the way the NHS shares data about organisations (see also our item on custom organisation groupings below). We’ll be writing more about this and other challenges in the new Policy thinktank shortly being launched in our team.

If you are signed up for regular email alerts for any CCGs which merged this April, you should find that your subscription has been updated. You can unsubscribe from any that you don’t want at any time using the links in the emails.

If you notice anything unusual with new CCGs or STPs please do get in touch at feedback@openprescribing.net.

Custom organisation groupings: OpenPrescribing plan for organisations like Primary Care Networks

Since launching OpenPrescribing we have developed a prescribing dashboard for every single GP practice, CCG, STP, NHS England region and the whole of England, but we continue to get emails asking for other types and combinations of organisations, including federations, super practices, ICSs and most recently PCNs. We aim to provide as many options for you as possible, including any custom groupings of your choosing. However, there are some challenges to overcome.

In this blog we describe some of the technical background about how the NHS is set up in terms of organisational data, and describe our plan for dealing with the ever evolving formations within the NHS.

OpenPrescribing comes to you

If you are running an event locally for doctors, pharmacists, nurses or anyone interested in using data to improve care, please contact feedback@openprescribing.net. Brian, one of our pharmacists, is available to come to your event over the coming months.

OpenPathology update!

As you know, we are now building OpenPathology.net modelled on OpenPrescribing: this will help everyone understand variation in use of blood tests across the NHS. We have made progress on this project and have updated the OpenPathology website with information on how your region can get involved. Please check it out.

In case you missed it…

Varied implementation of UTI prescribing guidelines The latest guidelines said nitrofurantoin should be used rather than trimethoprim for uncomplicated UTI. In our recent paper we found that practices which changed the most in response to this were in CCGs that had taken some action, such as a change in formulary. What are the implications? Read more on this in our blog – and you can of course see any region’s performance on this measure on OpenPrescribing.

Talks: At the Chief Pharmaceutical Officer’s annual conference Ben gave the keynote address and Brian hosted a workshop on data driven care. Brian also spoke at the Clinical Pharmacy Congress on June 7th. We discussed variation in prescribing, medicine formularies and primary care networks. If you have any ideas about these topics please get in touch at [email protected]

File on 4. In a recent BBC radio programme Ben talks about our work into recent opioid prescribing. Listen here.

Prescribing Data Update! We’ve updated OpenPrescribing with April’s data. Head over to to explore.

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