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PCMA's New Ad Campaign: E-Prescribing is Ready Now

Ad Features One of 35,000 Doctors Now Using E-Prescribing

WASHINGTON, May 20 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) is unveiling a new print ad campaign tomorrow that features one of the 35,000 doctors who successfully use electronic prescribing (e-prescribing) technology and who also say it should be required in Medicare.

The new ad features Dr. R. David Allard, a family practice doctor with the Michigan-based Henry Ford Health System. Dr. Allard will speak at the PCMA/RxHub E- Prescribing Symposium tomorrow in Washington, D.C. The Symposium includes keynote addresses from US Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Mike Leavitt, Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.), former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and representatives from the PBM, consumer, and employer communities.

"The fact that 35,000 doctors already use e-prescribing proves that the technology is ready today," said PCMA President and CEO Mark Merritt. "Nonetheless, most physicians still write prescriptions by hand and 7,000 Americans die each year due to medication errors. Let's end this recurring tragedy for America's seniors -- this year -- by requiring e-prescribing in Medicare."

The bipartisan "Medicare Electronic Medication and Safety Protection (E-MEDS) Act of 2007" was introduced in December by Senate Finance Committee Members John Kerry (D-Mass.) and John Ensign (R-Nev.), and enjoys support from 17 total co-sponsors, including Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), John Sununu, (R-NH), Joe Lieberman, (I-Conn.), and Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY). Companion legislation was introduced in the House by Representatives Allyson Schwartz (D-Penn.) and Jon Porter (R-Nev.), and currently has 32 total co-sponsors, including Representatives Lois Capps (D-Calif), Ellen Tauscher (D-Calif.) and Jason Altmire (D-Penn.).

In addition to enjoying strong bipartisan support in the House and Senate, a diverse group of consumers, employers, unions, and medical professionals recently signed a letter to Congressional leaders urging passage of the E-MEDS Act. Supporters of the E-MEDS Act include among others: AARP, AFL-CIO, Consumers Union, Ford Motor Company, General Motors Corporation, AT&T, and the American Medical Group Association.

Last month, PCMA released a TV, print, and online ad campaign urging policymakers to require the use of e-prescribing in Medicare "before more people die." The new television ad, featuring a woman mourning at a gravesite, highlights the fact that more than 7,000 people die every year because of medication errors and is intended to refocus the Medicare debate on patients, not just the providers who serve them.

SOURCE Pharmaceutical Care Management Association
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