Electronic prescribing (e-prescribing) isn’t a new concept in the medical field. The technology allows medical practitioners to send medication orders to pharmacies using electronic health record (EHR) software. This not only improves practice management at healthcare clinics but also streamlines the healthcare revenue cycle.
The e-prescribing market is valued at a whopping $1.25 billion and will reach $4.8 billion by 2027. The driving force behind this boom is the growing adoption and use of electronic health records by medical practices and ancillary services. That said, here’s a look at the roles and benefits of e-prescribe software in the healthcare revenue cycle.
Improved Clarity: Fewer Callbacks from Pharmacies
Hand-written prescriptions are not only efficient but can also introduce medication errors. According to a CNBC report, up to 440,000 deaths occur each year due to prescription errors that can be eliminated using advanced tech such as e-prescribe software. When compared to a hand-written prescription, an e-prescription is accurate in terms of dosage.
Since less interpretation is required on the part of pharmacists, clinics won’t grapple with callbacks from pharmacies to clarify dispensing orders. This saves time while reducing patients’ wait times at pharmacies. It also improves patients’ satisfaction level with the quality of service offered by medical practices and pharmacies.
Instant Clinical Alerts
In the US, over 4.5 million visits to physicians’ offices and ERs result from preventable adverse drug events (ADEs). Typically, these events are caused by interactions with other treatments or drugs, allergies, and other factors. The beauty of having e-prescription software is that it’s designed to address the ever-changing needs of healthcare tech.
A dynamic e-prescription system such as NewCrop eRX interfaces with EHRs to provide real-time data about patients’ past and current medical history. By incorporating the software into your medical practice, you’ll get alerted if a patient’s prescription interacts adversely with allergies or other treatments.
E-prescription systems also provide real-time alerts about duplicate treatments. This helps medical practitioners to avoid prescribing multiple medications/therapies for a similar medical indication. An e-prescribe software gives practitioners detailed info about possible side effects and interactions, which they use to enhance their prescription practices.
Access to Prescription Records
Storing digital prescription records is critical in situations like drug recalls and natural disasters where patient safety is threatened. For instance, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, patient care continued due to the availability of electronic prescription records.
Similarly, it’s easier to manage drug recalls in cases where entities have e-prescribing capability. The software enables pharmacies to efficiently trace specific medications to patients while expediting the delivery of crucial healthcare data.
Prescription Fulfillment Tracking
Every year, more than 1.6 million hospital readmissions occur. A significant number of these readmissions result from patients’ failure to collect their next refill. An e-prescribe system allows doctors to track whether patients have collected their next refill or not. Thus, clinicians know which patients are on top of their treatment and which ones have stopped following the prescribed treatment.
Prescription fulfillment tracking enables clinics to follow up with patients who fail to fill up their prescriptions and help them stay on track. By ensuring that patients follow through on their treatment regimen, hospital readmissions can be reduced significantly.
Implementing an e-prescribe system requires a financial outlay. Besides rolling out the system, accompanying training is necessary. Nonetheless, significant cost savings are guaranteed in the long run. By improving treatment outcomes, efficiency, and reducing patient visits, e-prescription adoption saves practices and patients a lot of money.
The cost savings attributed to e-commerce adoption result from the fact that the systems provide real-time alerts that enable providers to use more effective therapies. The alerts allow the discontinuation of duplicate treatments and unnecessary high-cost medications.
Streamlining Practice Management and Patient Care
In recent years, there has been a clamor for medical entities and ancillary services to digitize their health records. Incorporating an e-prescribe system into your healthcare revenue cycle is an excellent starting point as far as digitizing health records is concerned. With an e-prescribing system in place at your practice, paperwork is reduced significantly, thanks to the use of electronic devices to write, review, modify and transmit drug prescriptions.
As more medical practices and healthcare organizations embrace cloud technology, healthcare records will become more accessible, thus improving practice management and patient services. EHRs ensure that patients can still receive high-quality healthcare even when visiting practices where they don’t receive primary care.
E-prescriptions are a departure from hand-writing prescriptions. The system replaces paper files at your practice, hence improving workflow. Although entering e-prescriptions takes longer than writing paper scripts, the overall time savings is higher. This is particularly true when you consider that retrieving digital files takes a shorter time than locating paper files manually to find patients’ latest prescription information.
Shifting to EHRs and e-prescribing can help to streamline your facility’s processes by facilitating better patient health record management. For instance, file sharing is easier and more efficient with digital formats than with conventional paper systems. Also, reproducing patient records is instantaneous, and the cost of processing patient files is minimal because there is no printing, faxing, collating, or mailing costs.
With an electronic subscribing system in place at your practice, digital archives are created automatically. These can get indexed and searched from any location provided there’s an Internet connection. As a result, your practice gets access to a fully integrated system that’s compatible with different devices.
The traditional prescription process allowed errors in treatment instructions, dosage, and the medication itself to creep in. With e-prescription systems, these errors are mitigated since clinicians have accurate and relevant patient information. In turn, they provide clear prescription information to pharmacies.
Most importantly, e-prescription systems enhance the efficiency and safety of prescribing practices, thus saving time and costs while improving patient outcomes. As the medical field transitions more into the digital realm, practices should incorporate e-prescribing into their operational setup. Patients are also becoming more comfortable and conversant with web-based medical services, hence the need for clinics to consider the switch.
Over 200 EHRs and 40,000 doctors have chosen NewCrop for their e-prescribing needs including navigating the complexities of Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances (EPCS). NewCrop can be leveraged in connection with an EHR or as a standalone service.