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DE Starts Prescription Drug Monitoring Program EHR Integration

Delaware providers will now benefit from the EHR integration of the state’s prescription drug monitoring program.

The Delaware Division of Professional Regulation announced a statewide EHR integration of its prescription drug monitoring program.

Delaware will utilize Appriss Health’s PMP Gateway solution and integrate it in all pharmacies across the state. Delaware and Appriss Health have worked together since 2017, and the PMP Gateway solution is home to nearly 8,000 users and over 16 million controlled substance prescriptions.

The Delaware Division of Professional Regulation will cover all integration service fees, ideally ensuring adoption across the state, while also helping providers meet Delaware prescribing guidelines and policies.

“Delaware currently has the second highest drug overdose death rate in the United States, and the ongoing opioid crisis has created a colossal challenge for the state’s behavioral health treatment providers,” Jason Slavoski, Delaware Prescription Monitoring Program Administrator, said in a statement. “This statewide partnership with Appriss Health improves our PMP’s efficacy to help mitigate the opioid epidemic in our communities.”

Using this platform, Delaware providers will have access to PDMP data and analytics within their respective EHRs and pharmacy management system workflows.

PDMP is a state-run electronic database that collects data from pharmacies on Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) controlled substances and dispensed prescription drugs.

A prescriber utilizes a PDMP each time she writes a prescription. PDMPs create a patient record for prescribers to fully grasp a patient’s full prescription drug history.

Experts say these programs improve prescribing practices, target treatment to at-risk patients, and mitigate the risk of potential abuse or fraud by patients who obtain prescriptions from multiple providers. Providers can review the data before prescribing opioids to intervene if there are signs of misuse or abuse.

“Wide adoption of prescription monitoring information into clinical workflow can effectively identify, prevent, and manage potential problems with prescription drug addiction,” Rob Cohen, president of Appriss Health, said in a statement.

“We’re honored to partner with the Delaware Division of Professional Regulation to provide healthcare providers with enhanced tools for early intervention of substance use disorder and improved outcomes.”

Before this partnership with Appriss Health, Delaware providers utilized separate systems to access patient information, resulting in administrative burden and fragmentation. Prescribers can access patient information through the PDMP on one, simple interface following EHR integration.

Excluding Missouri, 49 states currently use a statewide PDMP. However, lawmakers in the Show-Me State reached a compromise earlier this year that should allow the state to develop a statewide PDMP.

In March, Missouri state Senator Tony Luetkemeyer proposed an amendment to the bill that passed the state House of Representatives to create a “Joint Oversight Task Force for Prescription Drug Monitoring.” The purpose of the group is to protect patient data by allowing medical professionals to oversee the use and collection of data. This proposal would be in place of the state running the PDMP.

Luetkemeyer’s amendment would make it easier for the state to implement a PDMP.

“We put a provision in that had a complete bar on basically sharing the data for non-prescribing or treatment purposes,” said Luetkemeyer. “So, you can’t give it to law enforcement. You can’t have the government have free rein to go through medical records in the database. Now, it’s really just being used as a treatment and clinical tool.”

In the past, conservative Republicans from Missouri have lobbied against PDMPs citing privacy concerns. Republicans say they do not want patient data to land in the hands of law enforcement.

This latest amendment would put the onus on providers, not the state, to operate and access the PDMP, a compromise Luetkemeyer said may appease both state Senate Democrats and Republicans.

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