Healthcare today is full of buzz words and acronyms like value based care, MIPS, MACRA, and interoperability. As a pharmacist, I find there are two buzz words that hit very close to home for every patient, and also represent two very different sides of an important healthcare industry coin—adherence and addiction. These two actions couldn’t be more opposite yet equally as important to monitor. For some patients, there is a very fine line between remaining adherent to their medication regiments, and staying out of the darkness of addiction. Healthcare professionals across the board need to do all they can to keep their patients in balance. We must stress adherence all the while watching for signs of addiction. How you do that is up to you.
Today’s technology can be a very valuable resource to keep your patients’ behavior in check. Some software systems have features that deliver providers insights into their patients’ medication history and use patterns. It’s just a matter of taking advantage of the tools that are at your fingertips.
There are a multitude of regulations that impact what and how providers can prescribe for their patients: REMS programs, EPCS and PDMP mandates, MME prescribing restrictions, to name a few. Beginning January 1, 2021, the SUPPORT Act that was signed into law in 2018 will bring about an e-prescribing mandate for all controlled substance prescriptions for Medicare Part D patients. And if that wasn’t enough, Walmart has a new policy that will require ALL controlled substance prescriptions to be e-prescribed to their pharmacies starting January 1, 2020. Their deadline will be here before you know it, so the time to prepare is now.
How can you prepare?…
By using your in-workflow solution to check your state’s PDMP database and ensure that your practice is set up for EPCS (Electronic Prescribing of Controlled Substances). The Azalea platform offers these functionalities, and several more that can help you and your staff not only remain compliant with the impending regulations but also be informed prescribers for all patients.
If there’s one thing you can do that is quick and painless, it’s ensuring that your practice has prescribing efficiencies in place to allow you to do the following:
- Be fully aware of your patients’ medication use patterns
- Stay compliant with all current regulations
- Prepare for upcoming regulations
- Work as efficiently as possible so that you can spend more time talking with your patients
The power of conversation is immeasurable; take the extra time you get back by improving your efficiency and get to know more about your patients so you can more effectively treat them. You can keep them adherent and avoid the trappings of potential addiction.
At DrFirst, we provide our partners—like Azalea—the industry’s best medication management tools to help their clients get back to being a Doctor first. Contact your Azalea rep for more information about our e-prescribing, price transparency, and medication management solutions.
To learn more, watch our webinar “Informed Prescribing Within Workflow: A Step Towards Combating Medication Misuse” on demand!
Heidi Polek, RPh
Sr. Manager, Independent Pharmacy Solutions