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All Things HIT

Nov 15 2010   8:26AM GMT

Working together for HIT….ePrescribeFlorida a Case Study



Posted by: AllinHIT
ePrescribe HIT Surescripts

Prior to taking a long vacation in October, I was invited and attended the SureScripts SafeRX Award Luncheon, in Washington DC.   This annual luncheon held by SureScripts recognizes the Top 10 ePrescribing States, determined by their ePrescribing Rate ( percentage of electronic prescriptions to all prescriptions).  I was elated to attend this event, as a representative of ePrescribeFlorida, an organization that was most responsible for the State of Florida, being honored as the 10thranked State in electronic prescribing on the SureScripts Network.

 In 2007, ePrescribeFlorida, was the brainchild of one person, Walt Culbertson, a former Availity executive, whose wife eventually died from cancer, but nearly died for receiving the wrong medication during her treatment!  Knowing her adverse drug effect, could have been easily avoided had the physician electronically prescribed the medication.  The ePrescribe system would of created an alert, detailing an allergy to morphine, hence saving Walt, his wife, and his family from unnecessary stress, in an already, stressful situation.  Walt, having connections in the industry, met with BCBS of Florida, and together they started ePrescribeFlorida, with the goal of increasing the ePrescription rate in Florida, through education.  Walt was able to bring all of the stakeholders in the State together, government,  payors, pharmacists, medical societies, IPA’s, software vendors, SureScripts, eRX, and many others.  Our ePrescribe team, worked tirelessly for 3 years promoting and educating physicians on electronic prescribing.   What were the results of our efforts?    

In 2006 Florida’s electronic prescription rate was less than 3%.  Since, our e-prescription rate is closer to 15% and rising.  From 2006 to 2007, Florida experienced an annual increase in the number of electronic prescriptions of 1.6%.   From 2007 to 2008, after the formation of ePrescribe Florida, the increase was 4.3%, then last year our rate increased to 10.3%.  In 2008, Florida’s ranking by SureScripts was 20th, now in the Top 10, within 2 years!  This is a great case study on how stakeholders can work together to influence the adoption of health information technology.  Thanks Walt, Catherine Peper, of BCBS of Florida, and the many people that had a stake in this effort.  By working together on a common vision we influenced the adoption of ePrescribing in our State……..well done!  

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