PDL alert on electronic prescribing

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PDL has issued an alert to its members on privacy and workflow concerns around electronic prescribing.

Electronic prescribing is now part and parcel of most pharmacies’ daily business.

PDL says that dispensing ePrescriptions is covered under the PDL Master Policy as these prescriptions are treated by the policy in a similar manner to paper prescriptions.

At this time, PDL has not seen an increase in errors associated with ePrescriptions.

However, the PDL reminds pharmacists to be aware that any change or interruption to normal prescription workflow may lead to errors so the introduction of ePrescription processing should be carefully considered.

Extra monitors or devices will be necessary for efficient workflow, especially for verification of the dispensed item against the electronic version of the prescription.

The checking of prescriptions awaiting collection is an aspect of the supply process that needs to be considered. Presently, medicines awaiting collection are usually placed in a basket along with the paper prescription so a pharmacist can double-check and counsel before handing out the medication.

Without a hard copy to refer to, an easily accessible monitor or screen should be available to check the dispensed medicines against the electronic version of the prescription.

The patient’s details as they appear on a paper prescription will not be available to confirm the patient’s identity so other steps must be taken to ensure the medicine is supplied to the correct patient.