E-Prescribing with DrFirst and LSS/MEDITECH MPMc

One of the pending requirements that will see its way to the final document  for “Meaningful Use” is to have physicians electronically submit prescriptions.  LSS Data Systems/MEDITECH have partnered with Dr. First to add this functionality into their MPMc product.  As of this post, there are only 3 MAGIC clients utilizing the e-prescribing functionality in Live.  I am currently working with an MPMc client to bring them Live with e-prescribing in early December which will make them number 4.  I’ll update this post when I can get the C/S numbers, but I’m assuming that they aren’t much higher.

Given there are a low number of clients actually utilizing this functionality and the assured rush to use e-prescribing in the near future, a post on some considerations for implementing this functionality seemed appropriate.  Here are some items that have proven true with my current client:

Government Payors do not provide formularies through this Dr. First/LSS/MEDITECH functionality.  This means that if the vast majority of your patient base is on Medicare or Medicaid, you will only receive formularies for the small number of patients on private insurance.  Some healthcare organizations might not mind this now, but if the current healthcare bill passes (at all) with a public option, this could have larger implications than currently exist.

LSS can send unlinked patient refill requests. Having these unlinked patient refill requests will assist with testing.  My current client wasn’t aware that LSS and it doesn’t look like LSS is proactively telling clients this.  Having said that…

There is no way to verify that the information coming from DrFirst is correct. Unfortunately, if you would like to verify that the information being sent to your system is correct, you can’t.  Neither LSS or DrFirst provide testing files that list exactly what formulary, demographic, medication, etc. information is being sent.  This functionality is really a “We’ll flip the switch and hope it works; cross our fingers” kind of deal.   I would strongly recommend watching the NMI jobs and questioning every error that comes across there.

It will be interesting to see how many clients utilize DrFirst’s Rcopia web product vs. going up with the MPMc version.  The risk of using brand new functionality in a software product may tempt clients to stick with the Rcopia even though that means users will have to do a little more work to get the job done.  If you’re currently questioning which way to go, I would recommend actually talking to those utilizing the functionality in Live before making your final decision.

Update:  Per DrFirst, there are 20 LSS clients using E-Prescribing.  Whether they are live with the functionality or not was not specified.

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