DrFirst, a leading provider of e-medication management solutions, released today an assessment of the marketplace readiness of available technology solutions to support the electronic prescribing requirements that are mandated under New York’s Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing (I-STOP) law. Beginning March 27, 2015, I-STOP requires that all patient medications be electronically prescribed, including controlled substances and non-controlled substances (commonly referred to as “legend drugs”). Represented in an infographic titled “NY I-STOP: Fighting Prescription Drug Abuse with Technology,” the data illustrates that the majority of electronic health records (EHRs) and stand-alone e-prescribing systems used by doctors to electronically prescribe medications will be able to support both legend drug e-prescribing (eRx) and controlled substance e-prescribing (EPCS) in advance of the I-STOP deadline.
DrFirst’s analysis of the marketplace indicates that, at present, ambulatory EHRs (typically used in non-acute settings) serving approximately 80 percent of New York providers in practices and health systems, and acute EHRs serving approximately 85-percent of New York hospitals, long-term care facilities, and other acute care environments, have both eRx and EPCS capabilities either already live or on target to be available to users in advance of the March 27 deadline.
The I-STOP mandate was put in place by New York state legislators to help fight prescription drug over-use and abuse, which has risen to epidemic levels nationwide. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that drug overdose is the leading cause of death from injury and that most drug overdose deaths are related to pharmaceuticals. In New York, drug overdose deaths have risen 56-percent since 1999, according to the Trust for America’s Health. Deaths from opioid pain reliever overdoses are four times the rate of heroin and cocaine deaths combined, according to the CDC. E-prescribing software has long been proven to provide substantial benefits to doctors and their patients, and has most recently been recognized as one of the most effective ways to reduce drug diversion and “doctor shopping,” which are leading causes of the misuse of high profile narcotics such as hydrocodone drug combinations.
“Our research indicates that access to universal e-prescribing technology appears to be on a solid path toward supporting the I-STOP initiative,” said G. Cameron Deemer, president of DrFirst. “DrFirst’s Rcopia® and EPCS GoldSM stand-alone e-prescribing users, nearly 80 of DrFirst’s EHR partners who have users in New York, and many other EHRs are well-positioned to deliver eRx and EPCS capabilities to their customers by March 27th. Having this widely-available technology to battle prescription drug abuse and misuse has never been more urgent, and it looks like New York providers will have sufficient options available to them to meet the I-STOP deadline.”
While e-prescribing capability is on target to support I-STOP, pharmacy readiness appears somewhat behind. The DrFirst infographic illustrates that while 97-percent of New York pharmacies are currently eRx-ready, only 58-percent of New York pharmacies are also EPCS-ready at this time. “On the face of it, this seems concerning,” said Deemer. “However, we have seen pharmacy EPCS-readiness in New York increase more than 80-percent over the last several months and if strong growth persists it is likely that most pharmacies will be able to support EPCS prescriptions under I-STOP.”
The “NY I-STOP: Fighting Prescription Drug Abuse with Technology” infographic is posted to DrFirst’s website along with additional I-STOP-related materials: www.DrFirst.com/ISTOP. The infographic will be updated as new information becomes available and time elapses toward the March 27, 2015 I-STOP e-prescribing deadline.
DrFirst pioneers technology solutions that inform the doctor-patient point of encounter, optimizing provider access to patient information, enhancing the doctor’s clinical view of the patient, and improving care delivery and clinical outcomes. Our growth is driven by a commitment to innovation, security, and reliability across a wide array of services, including Medication Management, Medication Adherence, and Secure Communication and Collaboration. We are proud of our track record of service to more than 320 EMR/EHR/HIS vendors and an extensive network of providers, hospitals and patients. For more information, please visit www.drfirst.com.
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