Published: 21/03/2002, Volume II2, No. 5797 Page 20

The National Audit Office has delivered a positive report on NHS Direct, while warning it could exacerbate the digital divide by not reaching older and disadvantaged groups.

NHS Direct in England , www. nao. gov. uk

A system has been developed by Merton, Sutton and Wandsworth GPs to improve links between NHS Direct and out-of-hours GP services.With a patient's consent, details of an NHS Direct consultation are e-mailed to their GP's practice and entered into their records.

www. nhsia. nhs. uk

The Community Practitioners'and Health Visitors'Association is threatening to 'name and shame' trusts that fail to meet government IT targets for community staff, in its Make IT Happen campaign.

Responsibility for issuing NHS numbers to babies will transfer from the Registrar of Births, Marriages and Deaths to NHS trusts in October.The move will require improved computer systems in maternity units and community child health departments.

www. doh. gov. uk/ipu/what new/nn4bguidance. htm