Physicians, Pharmacists Describe Barriers to Use of E-Prescribing

Certain barriers are preventing physicians and pharmacies from realizing the full benefit of electronic prescribing systems, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, Modern Physician reports.

For the study -- which was funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality -- researchers from the Center for Studying Health System Change conducted 114 interviews in 2010 at 24 physician practices, 48 community pharmacies and three mail-order pharmacies (Conn, Modern Physician, 11/21). All of the surveyed entities use e-prescribing systems (AHRQ release, 11/21).

Study Findings

The study found that physicians and pharmacies generally were satisfied with the electronic submission of new prescriptions, and that e-prescribing is used more frequently for new prescriptions than for renewals.

The study also found that:

  • About 75% of physician practices said they encountered challenges sending new prescriptions and renewals to mail-order pharmacies;
  • Nearly 50% of pharmacies said they often rewrote instructions so patients would understand them;
  • About 33% of physician practices said that they are not equipped to receive electronic renewal requests or that they receive them only occasionally; and
  • More than 25% of community pharmacies said they do not send electronic renewal requests to physicians (Miliard, Healthcare IT News, 11/22).

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