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NHS Could Save £500 Million a Year through new Software Designed By University of Warwick Students

Published Originally 26 June 2001

A chance conversation between a pharmacist and a group of University of Warwick Computer Science undergraduates sparked the development of software with the potential to reduce the total NHS prescription drugs budget by 10%.

The new ScriptSwitch software which resulted from that conversation allows drug prescribers to use one click technology to create the most cost effective quality prescriptions. One of the development team, University of Warwick student Duncan Greenshields, explains, "Our objective was to ensure that the software would not be complex and time consuming to operate. It simply sits alongside the GPs own system and flags up a quality alternative if a saving is recognised." However, the drug prescriber has the option to ignore the recommended prescription if desired.

"When we extrapolated potential savings across the NHS, we could not believe the figure of ?500 million. We went over and over the calculation and only then realised the enormous potential of ScriptSwitch to the NHS" says Kelvin Acford, pharmacist and a partner in AKM Software. "Primary Care organisations are already beginning to notice the potential of ScriptSwitch. They will soon have control of their own budgets and will be able to retain savings made to improve levels of patient care depending on local priorities."

However as Andrew Bodsworth (University of Warwick student and AKM Project Manager) notes, "Although it's the savings that everyone notices, ScriptSwitch is not just about money, but also about consistency of prescribing across the country and ensuring that the health of the patient is not compromised." The "ScriptSwitch" prescribing software is being launched by AKM Software at the prestigious BBC "Innovate" Exhibition at Earls Court (27-29 June), with the assistance of the University of Warwick Science Park business creation initiative, TeamStart.

For further information contact:

Andrew Bodsworth, 0797 062 8463
Or AKM Software on tel. 01604 881889