Navigation Links
PCMA Applauds Secretary Leavitt's Support for Requiring E-Prescribing in Medicare

Leavitt: 'It saves lives. It saves money. And it's time.'

WASHINGTON, Feb. 6 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In another sign of the growing momentum for electronic prescribing (e-prescribing), Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Mike Leavitt testified today before the Senate Finance Committee that e-prescribing standards and technology are in place and that "it's time" to adopt the technology in Medicare.

When questioned by Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) on the adoption of e-prescribing in Medicare, Secretary Leavitt said: "It saves lives. It saves money. And it's time."

"PCMA applauds Secretary Leavitt's continued leadership in advocating for adopting e-prescribing in Medicare," said The Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) President and CEO Mark Merritt. "This bipartisan issue is generating support from policymakers who want to improve health care quality and lower costs."

In December, the bipartisan "Medicare Electronic Medication and Safety Protection (E-MEDS) Act of 2007" that would require e-prescribing in Medicare was introduced by Senate Finance Committee Members Kerry and John Ensign, (R-Nev.). Companion legislation was introduced in the House by Representatives Allyson Schwartz, (D-Penn.) and Jon Porter, (R-Nev.). Both bills are supported by a broad coalition of consumers, unions, businesses, purchaser groups, and other prescription drug stakeholders.

E-prescribing improves safety by alerting a doctor when a drug about to be prescribed could dangerously interact with other medications that a patient is already taking. E-prescribing also eliminates medication errors that result from sloppy handwritten prescriptions that are illegible at the pharmacy counter.

Last year, PCMA launched an ad campaign featuring Institute of Medicine (IOM) expert panelist J. Lyle Bootman that called on policymakers to require e-prescribing in Medicare "before more people die." Dr. Bootman co-chaired an IOM committee that recommended that all physicians begin using e-prescribing by 2010 to help reduce the estimated 1.5 million preventable medication errors that occur in the United States annually. According to the IOM, each year some 7,000 people die from medication errors. Unfortunately, fewer than one-in-ten physicians currently use life-saving e-prescribing technology.

In an op-ed published today, Secretary Leavitt stated:

"Our progress is moving fast enough that it is time to make another important step: linking e-prescribing to Medicare reimbursements. I have proposed to Congress that when they deal with reimbursements for doctors in June, they require doctors to use e-prescribing in order to get the highest rates of compensation."

The complete exchange between Senator Kerry and Secretary Leavitt is below:

Senate Finance Committee

February 6, 2008

Sen. Kerry: We have a bill, a bipartisan bill that we put in, which would require physicians to adopt e-prescription and ask in return that every physician in Medicare adopt this practice by 2011. Every independent analysis indicates this saves lives. It saves money, and Medicare spending will be curbed if it is passed. And I think it should be passed and passed quickly. Do you agree with that? Do you agree with the judgment that it saves lives? It prevents errors, and that Medicare ought to adopt this rapidly?

Sec. Leavitt: It saves lives. It saves money. And it's time. Two years ago, I don't believe I could have said we're ready. But we now have succeeded in developing technology and having standards. This is the moment we need to begin to create that expectation that if you're going to be reimbursed at the highest rate, you need to provide it to us in the most efficient and safe way.

Sen. Kerry: So the standards are in place and the technology is there and we could go forward in your judgment?

Sec. Leavitt: In my judgment, we could, and we support it and hope very much at the first available opportunity we can do that.

Sen. Kerry: Well I hope we will also, and I thank you for that.

PCMA is the national association representing America's pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs), which administer prescription drug plans for more than 210 million Americans with health coverage provided through Fortune 500 employers, health insurance plans, labor unions, and Medicare Part D.

SOURCE Pharmaceutical Care Management Association
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. AIDS Healthcare Foundation Applauds City Commissioners Support of Diversity, Urges Call for Mayors Resignation
2. Fairness Coalition Applauds Senate Passage of Mental Health Parity Bill
3. SNM applauds NAS study showing need to restore federal nuclear medicine research funding
4. Cardiac Science Applauds Mass AED Training of Pittsburgh Educators
5. Coalition to Protect Floridas Drivers Applauds Governor Crist for Adding PIP to Special Session
6. AGD Applauds Congressional Support of SCHIP Reauthorization
7. Tobacco-Free Kids Applauds Tyra Banks for Exposing the Ugly Truth About Smoking
8. Health IT Now! Coalition Applauds Representatives Eshoo and Rogers for Introducing Health IT Legislation
9. Autism Speaks Applauds Supreme Court Decision Upholding Families Right to Challenge IEPs Without First Trying Out School District Proposed Placement
10. California Alliance Applauds Governors Support of Group Home Reform for Foster Youth
11. ASGE Applauds News of Drop in Colorectal Cancer Deaths
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... ... a legally blind and certified personal trainer is helping to develop a weight loss fitness ... to fix the two major problems leading the fitness industry today:, , ... They don’t eliminate all the reasons people quit their exercise program ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture ... said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package ... Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Conventional wisdom preaches the benefits of ... of the latter, setting the bar too high can result in disappointment, perhaps even ... progress toward their goal. , Research from reveals that behind ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... The Pulmonary Hypertension Association ... it will receive two significant new grants to support its work to advance ... 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical professionals and scientists for their work in ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... People across the U.S. are sharpening their pencils and ... essay contest in which patients and their families pay tribute to a genetic counselor ... National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education Conference (AEC) this September. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... FRANCISCO, Calif. , June 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... ), a biopharmaceutical company developing novel therapeutics for ... unmet needs, today announced the closing of its ... of common stock, at the public offering price ... in the offering were offered by GBT. GBT ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Research and Markets has ... 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, Forecasts" report to their ... Electronics, Smart Skin, Structural Health Monitoring, Composite Smart ... electronics involves electronic and/or electrical components and circuits ... structures such as vehicle bodies or conformally placed ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  American Respiratory Labs (ARL), a ... now able to perform sophisticated lung assessments in patients, homes, thanks ... Inc. Patients are no longer limited to having ... PRO ® , ARL patients like Jeanne R. of ... the comfort of her own home. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: