Collaboration with DrFirst, Inc. anticipated to expand electronic prescribing adoption among prescribers

January 9, 2005

Rockville, MD – DrFirst announced today that it is joining the eRx Collaborative, a joint effort between Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (BCBSMA), Tufts Health Plan (Tufts HP), Neighborhood Health Plan (NHP) and ZixCorporation (ZixCorp). These organizations have been working together to promote and enable the adoption of electronic prescribing among Commonwealth prescribers.

This joint initiative offers DrFirst’s comprehensive e-prescribing program, Rcopia, to Massachusetts physicians in the BCBSMA, Tufts HP, and NHP networks with the goal of improving patient safety and physician office efficiency while reducing medical costs. The expansion of the Collaborative allows prescribers to adopt and utilize DrFirst’s award-winning Rcopia Electronic Prescription Management program, which is also endorsed by the Massachusetts Medical Society.

DrFirst Rcopia offers an end-to-end electronic prescribing system that integrates patient eligibility and formulary information with medication history at the point of care. The system allows the physician to transmit the prescription electronically to the pharmacy of the patient’s choosing. This process works for renewals as well as new prescriptions. DrFirst Rcopia is designed to produce legible and error-free prescriptions, reducing the number of phone calls and faxes between the physician’s office and the pharmacy. The system also increases patient safety by incorporating automatic drug-to-drug and drug-to-allergy interaction checking at the time of prescribing.

Physicians can use DrFirst Rcopia via the web on desktop, laptop and tablet PCs. Mobile implementation is powered by DrFirst Rcopia for Palm OS®, which integrates seamlessly with the web-based system to ensure full on-line and off-line functionality. This initiative will offer enrolled physicians Rcopia with their choice of state-of-the-art wireless handhelds in support of this effort. Physicians may choose from either the WiFi-enabled Tungsten™ C handheld or the Dell Axim as their mobile electronic prescribing tool.

“We see a great benefit to expanding our long-term commitment to e-prescribing and broadening the distribution of this technology to physicians across the Commonwealth, thus offering our physicians the opportunity to improve patient care and reduce prescribing errors,” says Dr. Joseph Raduazzo, Medical Director for pharmacy at Tufts Health Plan. “We are pleased to have the opportunity to engage DrFirst in this effort.”

“We have undertaken this patient safety and cost reduction initiative because we see a great benefit to our members, our network physicians, the pharmacies, and, in fact, the entire health care system in Massachusetts,” said Dr. Robert Mandel, BCBSMA vice president of eHealth. “By enrolling physicians who write the highest volume of prescriptions for our members, we expect to improve prescription drug safety, convenience and costs for the maximum number of our members.”

Moving the process from paper to an electronic platform can greatly increase the safety and efficiency of the process. A 1999 Institute of Medicine report cited medical errors – including those related to improperly prescribed medications – as the 8th leading cause of death for Americans, more than motor vehicle accidents, breast cancer or AIDS.

“The eRx Collaborative has taken a leadership role in the adoption of e-Prescribing, and we are pleased to join in this effort,” said John F. Bartos, Jr., president of DrFirst, Inc. “We applaud these health plans for recognizing the value of e-prescribing and for their commitment to ensure that Massachusetts prescribers reap the many benefits that come from e-Prescribing,” said Bartos.

DrFirst also provides leading edge secure text messaging platforms for physicians, hospitals and EMR/EHR vendors.

About Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts was founded 67 years ago by a group of community-minded business leaders. Today, headquartered in Boston, BCBSMA provides coverage to 2.6 million members. Consistently recognized for standards of service that are among the highest in the nation, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is the choice for health care consumers seeking reliable and high quality health care coverage. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. (

About Tufts Health Plan
Tufts Health Plan is a nationally recognized leader in providing comprehensive, quality health care coverage. Recently, Tufts Health Plan HMO has been recognized as a Distinguished Health Plan by J.D. Power and Associates, for providing “An Outstanding Member Experience.” Tufts Health Plan is also the first health plan in Boston to earn a J.D. Power and Associates award for outstanding member satisfaction or service excellence for nine consecutive years. Tufts Associated Health Maintenance Organization, Inc., Total Health Plan, Inc. and Secure Horizons, Tufts Health Plan for Seniors, have been given Excellent NCQA status. The plan was named one of the top 10 accredited health plans in the nation in the HEDIS(R) Effectiveness of Care Measure in the 2004 State of Health Care Quality Report. (

About Neighborhood Health Plan (NHP)
Neighborhood Health Plan is a not-for-profit health maintenance organization serving MassHealth and commercial members across Massachusetts. NHP, founded in 1986 by the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers and the Greater Boston Forum for Health Action, is committed to providing innovative health care that is member-focused, quality driven and enhances all members’ access to quality health care. (

About ZixCorporation (ZixCorp)
Zix Corporation (ZixCorp(R)) provides easy-to-use-and-deploy e-communication services that protect, manage, and deliver sensitive information to enterprises and consumers in healthcare, finance, insurance, and government. ZixCorp’s secure e-messaging services enable policy-driven email encryption, content filtering, and send-to-anyone capability while its e-prescribing and e-lab services improve patient care, reduce costs, and improve patient efficiency. For more information, visit

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