Coalition Launches Electronic Prescribing Program
The National E-Prescribing Safety Initiative -- a coalition of technology and health care companies -- on Tuesday launched an Internet-based electronic prescribing program that physicians can access at no cost, CongressDaily reports (Sternstein, CongressDaily, 1/17). The software, called eRx NOW, "is available free to any health care provider with legal authority to prescribe medication, and requires no download, no new hardware and minimal training," according to a NEPSI release. Physicians and their staff learn to use the software through an online tutorial that can be completed in 15 to 20 minutes, NEPSI said (Reichard, CQ HealthBeat, 1/16).
Health care information technology company Allscripts and Dell developed eRx NOW with contributions from Cisco Systems, Google and Microsoft (CongressDaily, 1/17). Other members of NEPSI include Aetna, Wellpoint, Sprint Nextel and SureScripts.
The initiative will cost more than $100 million over five years, according to Allscripts CEO Glen Tullman (CQ HealthBeat, 1/16).