Consultation outcome

Extending the scope of the Electronic Prescription Service

This consultation was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

This consultation has concluded

Download the full outcome

Detail of outcome

As a result of this consultation and advice from the Advisory Committee on Misuse of Drugs (ACMD), the necessary legislative amendments will be made to enable the electronic prescribing of Schedules 2 and 3 controlled drugs for NHS and private prescribers. Prescriptions will be signed with an advanced electronic signature and sent via the electronic prescription service, with its additional security features.

Respondents were in favour of these changes. There was also support for the recording of the total quantity of Schedules 2 and 3 CDs to be dispensed to be required on electronic prescriptions in words and figures, as is the case for paper prescriptions for these drugs.

Original consultation

This consultation ran from to


Seeks comments on electronically prescribing Schedules 2 and 3 Controlled Drugs (CDs) both in the NHS and privately.


Consultation description

The NHS Electronic Prescription Service in England enables prescribers (e.g. GPs) to send prescriptions electronically to a dispenser (e.g. pharmacist) of the patient’s choice.

Schedules 2 and 3 CDs cannot be prescribed electronically. The aim of this consultation is to get views on electronic prescribing of NHS prescriptions for these CDs. They are also prescribed in private care settings so we are asking whether these proposals should extend to private care.

The Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 divides CDs into 5 Schedules (Schedule 1 CDs have no proven therapeutic value/Schedule 5 CDs present little or no risk and are lightly regulated).