Pressure grows to mandate e-prescribing

October 26, 2007

A broad coalition of groups has called on Congress to require that e-prescribing be used for all Medicare Part D prescriptions by 2010.

A broad coalition of groups representing consumers, unions, employers, public purchasers, pharmacies, and other stakeholders has called on Congress to require that e-prescribing be used for all Medicare Part D prescriptions by 2010. The coalition says that e-prescribing for Medicare patients could prevent 1.9 million adverse drug events over the next ten years and save billions of dollars, even after providing physicians with funds for equipment and training.

In effect, such a law would require every physician who sees Medicare patients to prescribe electronically, using either an EHR or a standalone e-prescribing program.

Among the organizations in the coalition are Consumers Union, Families USA, the Service Employees International Union, the AFL-CIO, the UAW, Aetna, the Pacific Business Group on Health, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, RxHub, and the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association.