April 11, 2013
The days of the prescription pad are coming to an abrupt end. We have been hearing about the mandate for electronic prescribing ever since the passage of the Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing (I-STOP) Act on August 27, 2012. However, what we have been waiting for are the regulations, providing us with details on how this new requirement will work. These long awaited regulations have finally arrived, having been adopted on March 27, 2013. See the Notice of Adoption here: http://docs.dos.ny.gov/info/register/2013/march27/pdf/rulemaking.pdf.
The general concept behind this new requirement is that all prescriptions (with some limited exceptions) must be made by electronic prescription in accordance with NY CLS Pub Health § 281 and applicable regulations. Exceptions include specific circumstances where electronic prescribing is not available due to temporary technological or electrical failure and when the prescription is issued by a practitioner to be dispensed by a pharmacy located outside the state, as outlined in the regulations.
The newly adopted regulations spell out exactly how this will work and how the exceptions will apply. For example, practitioners issuing electronic prescriptions for controlled substances must meet current requirements, in addition to utilizing an electronic prescribing application that is consistent with federal requirements. The practitioner must also register that application with the NYS Department of Health, Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement. This is one of many regulations, which are available to view here: http://w3.health.state.ny.us/dbspace/propregs.nsf/4ac9558781006774852569bd00512fda/cafae4129660b99c85257af600526117?OpenDocument.
While the implementation date remains partially elusive, many signs indicate the required date for eprescribing compliance is December 31, 2014, including the Office of the Professions,see here - http://www.op.nysed.gov/prof/pharm/pharmelectrans.htm. However, there is a good chance that this date may be delayed as the Department of Health works out the kinks, and practices begin implementation. That being said, it is never too early to begin preparations for the switch.
We will continue to provide educational information on this new NY requirement through the newsletter and webinars. Stay tuned!
For assistance with policies and procedures or to discuss with an attorney, feel free to contact Erica at EYoungerman@kirschenbaumesq.com or at (516) 747-6700 x. 308 or Jennifer at Jennifer@Kirschenbaumesq.com or at (516) 747-6700 x. 302.