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April 2024

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Welcome to April

What a whirlwind having the year-end and an extra-long BH weekend back-to-back! With 2 BH weekends on the horizon, we're all about how online services and the NHS App can help alleviate the stress during these times. Stay tuned for updates on new initiatives and campaigns that can assist you with this. For instance, check out our latest article on Online Registration with a GP Surgery (below).

This month's edition is filled to the brim with exciting news from the team and updates across the Primary Care IT landscape.


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ICE Upgrade - Preston & South Ribble

On Sunday 21st April 2024, Lancashire Teaching Hospitals will be undergoing a full system update of their ICE system.

This means that the system will be unavailable during this time for approximately 10 hours from 8am

If you feel you would like more information about this work, please contact the Pathology IT Team at



EMIS X Guides


We are excited to announce our first EMIS-X training guides!!

Having very recently been activated across practices - it has already been a hot topic for many of the team on the training we have delivered and meetings attended so we were under pressure (on ourselves) to get some training materials ready to help get you started.

This is just the beginning of the training support we will provide for EMIS-X. Dive into these latest offerings and stay tuned for more to come!

Access the Guides on the Academy Portal.



Welcome Back

IT Training Team Update

Linda Esseen has re-joined the team to fill in for Ashley Conway during her maternity leave. Some of you may recall Linda from her previous stint with the team about a year ago. This time, she will be responsible for practices in the Cheshire areas and hosting some of the online courses that we provide.

Linda will be in touch with her allocated practices in due course to offer support and assistance.



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E-Referral Service - Browser address change

From 12 April 2024, all health and care staff who access e-RS using the legacy URL ( will be directed to a new page that will require them to select an option to access e-RS on the new URL (

Please update and replace any instances of the legacy URL with the new URL in favourites and shortcuts, in line with the online guidance.

The system itself is not changing, simply the URL link used to access it.




Lithium Protocol (Emis Web)

We have recently been busy collaborating with the HSJ "Improving Medicines Safety Award" winning MLCSU Medicines Optimisation Team to design and import a suite of medicines safety protocols in GP Practices across Central Lancashire.

We have already shared the Clozapine Protocol and the Methotrexate/Trimethoprim Protocol in our (month) newsletter.

We are delighted to now be able to share the Lithium Protocol which has been developed following a local serious incident (where a patient with lithium levels that exceeded the range considered to be safe and therapeutic, was issued with a further prescription for lithium). The protocol aims to remind prescribers to check that lithium levels are in range and up to date prior to issuing any further prescriptions.

Use our link on the Academy Portal to download the protocol



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Patient Appointments- GPAD Data

Please be mindful of ensuring that all Patient Appointments are captured for the GPAD (GP Appointment Data)

Practices should check that Patient Appointments delivered for them by all Health and Care professional groups (including trainees and ARRS roles) are being added to the Appointment Book.

Health and Care professionals Include

  • General Practitioner • Practice Nurse • Health Care Assistants • Social Prescribing Link Worker • Physician Associate • First Contact Practitioner • Community Paramedic • Pharmacist • Pharmacist Technician • Health and Wellbeing Coach • Care Co-ordinator • Occupational Therapist • Dietician • Podiatrist • All other registered clinical professionals


Register With A Gp Surgery Online

Online Register with a GP Surgery service

As part of the newly published GP contract, all GP practices in England are being asked to begin using the Register with a GP Surgery Service from October 2024. The service is free to use and consists of an online registration service and a new paper form.

The Register with a GP surgery service is easy for patients to use, and more than 1 million patients have now used the digital service to find and submit a registration to a local GP.

Learn more and sign up to start offering this service



Reactions Newsletter

MS Outlook and NHSmail – Reactions

Want to save time and space in your inbox - Why not send a quick reaction to an email you received in Ms Outlook or NHSmail, but don't want to have to create an entire email reply just to send a thumbs up? Reactions is here to help!

MS Outlook Reactions guide

NHSmail Reactions guide




SystmOne Updates

SystmOne - Icon and button change

The icons and buttons used to represent codes in SystmOne will be changing at the next scheduled maintenance release on 25 April. The red ‘R’ icon used to add a read code (CTV3) or launch the Read Code browser is changing to a generic code icon. 

The Read Code Browser screen will also be renamed to the Code Brower. You will still see the red ‘R’ icon here if you want to view the Read Code hierarchy.

This change is being made to reflect that read codes are not they only type of code available when using these icons and buttons.

If you have a button on your toolbar for adding a code the icon will be updated automatically.

SystmOne - Communication Annexe

During April TPP will be rolling out the following enhancements to the communication annexe functionality:

  1. Future-date a message.
  2. Send recurring messages.
  3. Automatically generate a task to prompt a review after sending a future-dated or recurring message,
  4. Send longer SMS messages as a URL link as an alternative to sending a series of SMS messages.
  5. Increase the number of characters sent as a single SMS (from 306 characters) to avoid splitting longer messages across multiple SMS.

SystmOne Pathology auto-review rules engine

TPP are currently working with 20 GP practice sites to pilot the SystmOne pathology auto-review rules engine. The tool will automate the processing of pathology results against rule sets to determine whether a clinician needs to review the result or not. The engine checks details of incoming lab results against specified (local or regional) parameters. It can also be linked to clinical report, enabling any data on the patient record to be used to determine whether a manual review of the result is required. It is estimated that the auto-review engine will save each GP around 30 minutes per day.

**Don't Forget Nicola Reader is our very own SystmOne expert and trainer available for those SystmOne users in our patch **



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Emis Web Updates

Transferring Restrictions via GP2GP in Emis Web

Elements of the Patients Electronic Record which have been restricted by their previous practice to be transferred alongside the EPR (Electronic Patient Record). This is to ensure the new practice can review the restricted elements of the record to protect the safety of the Patient.

Medicine Searches

You now have the ability to search for Dictionary of Medicines and Devices (DM&D), Non-DM+D and withdrawn drugs. This means you are able to search specifically for non-DM+D within your practice and remove any that are still active for patients with current medications and replace them.

Additionally, when you have also received the MKB (Medical Knowledge Base) release, the MKB will run the search and your practice will receive targeted communications to explain how many withdrawn or non-DM+D drugs need amending. An example message will say: “following last night's MKB release, you now have 17 patients who have Withdrawn medication on their current medication list. Click here to access the search and replace these items with available alternatives.”



END Share Your Thoughts

Share Your Thoughts

Your feedback is what fuels our mission to empower GP Practice staff with the latest IT skills. Share your thoughts, suggestions, and success stories - we love hearing how you're applying your knowledge to improve patient care. Together, we can build a thriving community of tech-savvy NHS professionals. Connect with us on the Academy Portal, social media, join the mailing list for future updates, and let's continue learning and growing together!

Meet the MLCSU IT Training Team 

Our IT Training Team is here to support GP practice staff in the NHS by providing expert-led training on the latest healthcare technologies.

Our team is made up of experienced professionals who have a deep understanding of the unique needs and challenges faced by GP practices. We offer a range of training options, including in-person sessions, online courses, and one-on-one coaching, to ensure that our training is accessible and tailored to the needs of each practice.

With our support, GP practice staff will be equipped with the skills and knowledge they need to confidently use technology to improve patient care and streamline their daily workflows.

Contact your practice's designated trainer for more details.

Chris Hendry

Clinical Applications & IT Systems Manager (North)

Mobile: 07943 511170


Jackie Leigh

Clinical Applications Specialist | IT Training Team (North)

Mobile: 07876 546291


Jamie Roberts

Clinical Applications Specialist | IT Training Team (North)

Mobile: 07876 546237


Louise Holley

Clinical Applications Specialist | IT Training Team (North)

Mobile: 07876 546261


Sharon Tew

IT Trainer | Applications Support (North)

Mobile: 07778 368334


Ashley Conway - Currently on Maternity Leave

Clinical Applications Specialist | IT Training Team (North)

Mobile: 07721 490 889


Dave Phillips

IT Trainer | Applications Support (North)

Mobile: 07901 009153


Claire Lovesey

Clinical Applications Specialist | IT Training Team (North)

Mobile: 07876 546 213


Nicola Reader

Clinical Applications Specialist | IT Training Team (North)

Mobile: 07502 589 488


Linda Esseen

Clinical Applications Specialist | IT Training Team (North)

Mobile: 07557 810137