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The eProcurement strategy: GS1 and PEPPOL standards in healthcare

Delivering better patient care through efficiency and transparency in NHS procurement


The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) published its eProcurement strategy (PDF) in 2014. It set out a range of measures to enable transparency and efficiency in NHS procurement to help support patient safety.

The strategy includes a mandate that means any service or product procured by an NHS Acute Trust in England must be compliant with GS1 standards. The current deadline for compliance is 2019/20.

Compliance with these standards will enable Trusts to manage their non-pay spending through the adoption of master procurement data, automating the exchange of procurement data, and benchmarking procurement expenditure against other Trusts and healthcare providers.

What do Trusts have to do?

GS1 standards can be applied to many areas across a Trust (we call these ’use cases’), ranging from patient identification and product recalls, through to medical records management and procurement.

To help Trusts understand where to start, the Department of Health issued guidance on three ‘core enablers’ and three primary use cases. Each Trust must adopt GS1 standards in all of these areas, plus one additional use case.

Core enablers

These are enabling foundations that allow a Trust to use GS1 standards to identify every person, every product and every place:

Primary use cases

The three primary use cases are applications of GS1 standards across a Trust that will deliver real safety, compliance and efficiency savings.

Additional use cases

There are many additional applications where GS1 standards make a huge difference. In fact, these are just the tip of the iceberg – you can make efficiencies through adopting GS1 standards in nearly every area of healthcare. Don’t forget to check out case studies from Trusts already putting them into practice.

Help and support

If you have any questions, need some advice about implementing GS1 standards or want to find an accredited GS1 UK solution provider, we’re happy to help. Don’t forget to check out our case studies too. 

Contact us at or call 0808 172 8390.