June 02, 2017

Maine Next in Line to Battle Opioid Abuse with EPCS

Opioid abuse is growing by epidemic proportions and no state is immune to its tragic effects—including Maine. In 2016, overdose deaths in the state increased 40% over the previous year.* The good news: Maine is gearing up to fight the epidemic with Electronic Prescribing of Controlled Substances (EPCS).

On July 1, 2017, a new law will take effect in Maine that requires e-prescribing for all controlled substances containing opiates. It also limits the durations and quantities of opioid prescriptions and makes other requirements designed to minimize their abuse. When providers use EPCS, they can view comprehensive medication records to better determine if patients are “doctor shopping” or exhibiting other behaviors associated with drug abuse. EPCS also helps avoid prescription fraud or forgery.

With the law’s effective date rapidly approaching, many prescribers are working hard to become EPCS enabled. At the end of 2016, Maine was ranked 25th nationwide in terms of EPCS enablement with only 3.1% of prescribers enabled. This number has more than doubled to 6.8% as of April, 2017, but Maine still has a long way to go. Luckily, more than 99% of the state’s pharmacies are set up for EPCS, and most of the EHRs operating in Maine are already enabled for EPCS.

Maine EPCS enablement through April 30th, 2017

Adopting EPCS does take a bit of work—prescribers must complete identity proofing and credentialing processes—but the benefits of a single workflow for all prescriptions, and the health benefits for patients, are well worth the time and effort. If you’re a provider looking to become EPCS enabled, you can ease the transition by following the step-by-step process described on getEPCS.com. And be sure to visit surescripts.com to learn more about how we’re delivering actionable patient intelligence to improve patient care and safety.

As the fight against opioid abuse continues, EPCS is sure to become an increasingly powerful weapon—and that’s good news for healthcare professionals and patients alike.

*Source: http://www.pressherald.com/2017/02/02/number-of-drug-deaths-in-maine-hit-record-in-2016/ 

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

May 03, 2018

EPCS Legislation Shows Power and Promise

According to recent research from the IQVIA Institute, the number of opioid prescriptions in the U.S. fell 10.2% in 2017 compared to 2016. At the same time, lawmakers are taking aim at the opioid epidemic by ramping up legislation that mandates Electronic Prescribing for Controlled Substances (EPCS). Read more...

May 01, 2018

Spotlight on Technologies to Help Address the Opioid Crisis

In 2016, 42,200 Americans, or nearly five people every hour, died from opioid-related overdose. And according to a 2017 Council of Economic Advisers report, the opioid epidemic cost the nation $504 billion in economic losses in 2015, or 2.8 percent of the GDP that year. Read more...

April 03, 2018

Surescripts to the Food and Drug Administration: Tap into Tech to Hinder Opioid Misuse and Diversion

As the nation’s policy makers grapple with how to curb the opioid epidemic, we at Surescripts continue to join the conversation at various forums and offer our assistance and expertise in support of the cause. Read more...

INTELLIGENCE IN ACTION, DELIVERED TO YOUR INBOX