Dr Doug Hillblom Discusses Legislative Pushes Toward e-Prescribing

As the capabilities and benefits of e-prescribing become more widely known, states will likely continue enacting requirements to drive the uptake of this new technology, explained Doug Hillblom, PharmD, president at Arena Healthcare, LLC.
What state mandates and requirements around e-prescribing have been enacted?
We have states that have enacted mandatory e-prescribing for controlled substances. We have states that are mandating e-prescribing, period. I think this is an environment that’s changing rapidly. You are starting to see, and I include this in e-prescribing, electronic prior authorization being talked about in state legislatures, so I think you will be seeing more and more general adoption.
I think what you’re going to be seeing is that over the course of time, as we gain more experience and states gain more experience, health plans, et cetera, that there’ll be kind of a movement to incorporate as many potential components as possible. If state government doesn’t see things being incorporated as quickly as they would like, they will create a mandate. Often time we see people not implementing things because it’s not mandated, so mandates become part of an implementation concept. “I won’t do it until I have to,” well, now you’re going to have to, and that’s why states are doing so many of these legislative actions.
Are there any misconceptions about e-prescribing you would like to clarify?
E-prescribing in general, one of the things I would like people to think about is, it’s not just initiating and receiving a prescription. There are all kinds of components that we think about as a component of e-prescribing, whether that be prior authorization, whether it be looking at formularies, whether it be looking at refills or refill status or fill status. All of those are things that are part of the whole, shall we say, universe of e-prescribing. I think it’s important for people to think about e-prescribing beyond just being a transaction, but rather a group of interactions between the providers.
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