Case study: Butt Lane Pharmacy

Faster patient screening for Pharmacy First

With the launch of Pharmacy First in January 2024, Butt Lane Pharmacy expected an increase in patient contacts. But at the time, staff had no fast, remote way of screening patients against the service’s gateway criteria.
Then the pharmacy’s owner Rahul Sharda discovered Accurx. He has since used our SMS software and digital patient questionnaires to speed up information gathering, save time and reduce unnecessary appointments.
Try Accurx in your pharmacy

Impact at a glance:

2 hours+ saved a week with faster information gathering

More Pharmacy First cases managed

Fewer unnecessary appointments

Context: preparing for Pharmacy First

Before Pharmacy First launched in 2024, Rahul Sharda (owner and pharmacist at Butt Lane Pharmacy) knew the new service would result in more patient contacts but how many more, he didn’t know.
At the time, his team had no way to remotely screen patients against the gateway criteria for Pharmacy First, regardless of whether patients visited the pharmacy or were referred by their GP. As a result, he risked losing significant time every day when gathering information over the phone and in person.

If we get 15 referrals a week, it takes roughly 15 minutes to screen these against the gateway criteria for Pharmacy First when a patient comes in. So I could end up losing over hours of my working week to this task.

Rahul Sharda, owner and Pharmacist, Butt Lane Pharmacy

Rahul looked for a way to screen, diagnose and treat patients digitally.

In November 2023, they found Accurx

After discovering Accurx on a list of approved NHS digital suppliers, Rahul started using our software to identify whether referrals meet the gateway criteria for Pharmacy First, starting with UTI referrals.
He has since identified that around 15% of referrals don’t meet the criteria, helping his team to manage these remotely and save patients from unnecessary visits to the pharmacy.

How Rahul manages UTI referrals with Accurx:

1. The pharmacy receive a referral from one of their six local GP practices.

2. Rahul sends a digital UTI questionnaire via text, asking the patient about their symptoms.

3. The patient completes the questionnaire on a smartphone or computer at a convenient time.

4. Rahul screens their response to see if they meet the gateway criteria for Pharmacy First.

5. He phones the patient, finishing up the consultation and inviting them for a urine test via SMS.

6. The patient comes in, completing their test or collecting any medication.

I do 95% of the work through Accurx and then 5% on the phone to quickly confirm the information and ask any final questions. It has brought us into the 21st century.

Rahul Sharda, owner and Pharmacist, Butt Lane Pharmacy

What’s the impact been?

Using Accurx, Butt Lane Pharmacy have discovered a quicker way to gather patient information – one that reduces unnecessary delays and saves valuable clinical time. This has allowed the team to generate more revenue through Pharmacy First and avoids patients from making wasted journeys to the pharmacy if they don’t meet the criteria.
Accurx is also supporting the pharmacy’s Extended Access and New Medicine Service, helping to manage referrals to these services off site. This avoids the back-and-forth of missed phone calls and delays. For the COVID-19 spring booster campaign, Rahul is also planning to send out a mass text to patients inviting them to book their vaccination, which should help increase the number vaccinations they are able to deliver.
Speed up communication in your community pharmacy

Use Accurx for free and see how you can save time and improve service uptake in your community pharmacy.

Get started with Accurx

In general practice, it’s more common to interact over text, and I asked myself why we don’t have a system like this in community pharmacy. Using Accurx puts us on a level playing field so we have the digital tools to communicate quickly and effectively with patients, just as more and more GPs do today. Patients sometimes aren’t aware how effectively we can treat them within pharmacy – often without the delays they’ll experience elsewhere in the health system. Accurx helps us demonstrate that value and gives us the ability to go over and above.

Rahul Sharda, owner and Pharmacist, Butt Lane Pharmacy

Don't miss our webinar about Accurx for community pharmacies

Learn how to communicate quickly with patients and their GPs using Accurx at our webinar at 18:30 on Thursday 25th April. You'll hear from other pharmacists about how they're using our secure software to save time and improve their service delivery, and there'll be plenty of time to ask questions.

Reserve your spot

What else can you do with Accurx?

Message patients, using quick-to-use templates and questionnaires.

Hold video consultations quickly and securely with patients.

Manage cohorts of patients easily with patient lists.

Message patient GPs and get a summary of a patient’s GP records.

SG Barai Pharmacy are improving service uptake with Accurx

Prescriptions used to pile up and staff would struggle to reach patients at SG Barai Pharmacy. That all changed when the team discovering SMS messaging.
Read the full case study

Looking to use Accurx in your community pharmacy?

Get in touch with our team