Pharmacists in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South CarolinaCan Access the Free Service at www.surescripts.com/irma
ARLINGTON, Va. and Chicago – September 14, 2017 – In response to the historic impact of Hurricane Irma on the United States, Surescripts and Allscripts (NASDAQ:MDRX) are expanding the scope of the service available in the wake of Hurricane Harvey to provide free access to patient-specific medication history data for pharmacists in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina for a limited time. Pharmacists interested in utilizing the service should visit www.surescripts.com/irma to validate their eligibility and gain access to the Allscripts application. Once users have been authorized, they will need to obtain patient consent to see a 12-month view of a patient’s medication history. Prescribers who do not already utilize medication history data through their electronic health record (EHR) software can also download the free, cloud-based application to gain access.
In advance of Hurricane Irma, the federal government declared public health emergencies, enabling Medicare beneficiaries and their health care providers increased flexibility in meeting emergency health needs and loosening some provisions of the HIPAA Privacy Rule. Further, the Boards of Pharmacy in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina allow a pharmacist to dispense refill supplies of a prescription drug, other than a Schedule II controlled substance, without the authorization of the prescribing practitioner.
“The United States has faced a series of disasters in recent weeks that have tested our collective ability to meet the healthcare needs of patients during emergencies,” said Tom Skelton, Chief Executive Officer of Surescripts. “As the nation’s most trusted and capable health information network, we are proud to work with Allscripts to support pharmacists in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina as they respond to patients in need and work to deliver medications outside of normal circumstances.”
“The destruction Hurricanes Irma and Harvey have caused have had a devastating effect on communities, and it is critical to help providers deliver necessary care to patients in need as quickly as possible,” said Paul Black, Chief Executive Officer of Allscripts. “Our partnership with Surescripts will enable the delivery of critical information to care providers and their patients in the affected areas, ensuring accurate and timely care.”
An estimated 6.3 million people were ordered to evacuate the state, according to the Florida Division of Emergency Management. With nearly one-third of the state’s residents displaced from their homes, many patients may have misplaced their medication or may be unable to get to a doctor. Pharmacists can play a critical role in reconnecting patients with their care regimens in new settings.
Background on Digital Medication Networks
Prescribers already have access to complete and up-to-date medication history data through the nationwide Surescripts network which connects more than one million healthcare professionals and 230 million patients. This patient-specific information can help limit errors and adverse drug events by enabling providers to make more informed prescription decisions and optimizing their patients’ adherence to medication. In 2016, the Surescripts network processed more than 1.08 billion requests from prescribers for patient medication history data, sourced by community pharmacies, payers, and pharmacy benefits managers, in accordance with all laws protecting the privacy and security of patient health information.
Allscripts technology platform connects 45,000 physician offices and 185,000 clinicians, building an open, connected community of health through solutions that enable smarter care, delivered with greater precision, for healthier patients and populations. Allscripts ePrescribe offers a private and secure comprehensive electronic prescribing workflow largely considered the industry’s easiest-to-use e-prescribing solution. The cloud-based Allscripts ePrescribe Special Edition will enable pharmacists and physicians to pull medication history for the patients affected by Hurricane Irma.
In addition to their work together in response to Hurricane Harvey, Surescripts and Allscripts have both participated in similar initiatives in response to previous storms. In 2005, Surescripts participated in a public-private initiative to build an online database to provide pharmacies and clinicians access to patients’ prescription histories and allergies in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Allscripts also played a role in Katrina relief efforts by offering the ePrescribe solution to clinicians caring for patients affected by the disaster.
Surescripts and Allscripts worked across the healthcare industry and collaborated with numerous partners to make this service available quickly and easily. A list of all of the organizations who supported this effort is available online at www.surescripts.com/irma where additional information and resources are also available to assist healthcare professionals in the wake of Hurricane Irma.