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Southeast Michigan ePrescribing Initiative (SEMI) Drives Michigan into Top Five ePrescribing States Nationally

More than 2 million electronic prescriptions in Michigan generated by

physicians in SEMI program

DETROIT, March 7 /PRNewswire/ -- According to new data released today, more than 90 percent of the 2.5 million electronic prescriptions written in the state of Michigan in 2007 came from doctors within the seven counties of the Southeast Michigan ePrescribing Initiative (SEMI) -- helping drive Michigan to fifth in the nation in the adoption and utilization of ePrescribing technology. The findings are part of the Electronic Prescribing Progress Report, a national assessment of the adoption of electronic prescribing in the United States, published by SureScripts, operator of the Pharmacy Health Information Exchange(TM).

SEMI is a coalition that includes General Motors, Ford Motor Company, Chrysler LLC, the United Auto Workers, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Health Alliance Plan, Henry Ford Medical Group, Medco Health Solutions, Inc., CVS Caremark Corporation, RxHub, LLC and SureScripts(R).

"The SEMI program has played an integral role in advancing the adoption of electronic prescribing technology in the state of Michigan," said Karl Dalal, Director of Healthcare, Insurance and HR Programs, Ford Motor Company. "Electronic prescribing clearly leads to safer pharmacy care and lower costs for physician practices, employers, and consumers; advancing the adoption of this technology will continue to play a key role in treating the ills of the antiquated paper-based healthcare system in America."

Michigan received the Safe-Rx(TM) Award for finishing 5th among the top 10 ePrescribing states in the nation. Safe-Rx Awards are given each year to the 10 states that transmit the most electronic prescriptions as a percentage of the total number of prescriptions eligible for electronic routing over the Pharmacy Health Information Exchange(TM) operated by SureScripts. Michigan has been rising in the ranks since the Safe-Rx awards began in 2006. Last year, the Wolverine state came in sixth nationally, and in 2006 was 10th in the nation in use of the technology.

Doctors: Safer prescribing, better care come with electronic prescribing

A recent survey of physicians in the SEMI program revealed that improved patient safety and quality of care topped the list of key benefits of the technology. According to the survey, conducted by HaldyMcIntosh & Associates:

-- Three out of four prescribers believe strongly that ePrescribing

improves safety for their patients.

-- Nearly 70 percent of respondents say it improves the quality of care.

-- More than 80 percent of all prescriptions written by those surveyed are

currently written electronically; four of 10 practices now only write


-- More than 70 percent saw a reduction in communications with pharmacies

over prescription questions.

-- More than half strongly agree that ePrescribing saves clinicians time

and increases productivity.

The study also found that nearly 65 percent of physicians changed at least one prescription in response to a safety alert that warned of potentially harmful drug-drug interactions and drug-allergy risks at the time of prescribing. According to a 2006 report from the Institute of Medicine (IOM), at least 1.5 million preventable adverse drug events occur each year in the United States. The IOM recommends that all doctors adopt ePrescribing by 2010 to help alleviate this number and avoid the many mistakes that accompany handwritten prescriptions, including illegible handwriting, abbreviations and sound-alike pharmaceutical names.

Based on the survey findings, the SEMI partners will extend the initiative and continue to enroll physicians through June 30, 2008.

About SEMI

Launched in February 2005, The Southeast Michigan ePrescribing Initiative is one of the largest, employer-driven ePrescribing initiatives to encourage the adoption and use of ePrescribing, and validate the impact of ePrescribing technology on improving patient safety and reducing prescription drug costs. SEMI is a joint collaboration between General Motors, Ford Motor Company, Chrysler LLC, the United Auto Workers (UAW), Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Health Alliance Plan, Henry Ford Medical Group, Medco Health Solutions, Inc., CVS Caremark Corporation, RxHub, LLC and SureScripts(R).

Physicians interested in joining SEMI may call 1-800-722-8979 for more information.

About GM

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world's largest automaker, has been the annual global industry sales leader for 77 years. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 266,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit, GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 35 countries. In 2007, nearly 9.37 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling. GM's OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at

About Ford

Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F), a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles in 200 markets across six continents. With about 260,000 employees and about 100 plants worldwide, the company's core and affiliated automotive brands include Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lincoln, Mercury, Volvo and Mazda. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford's products, please visit

About Chrysler

Chrysler LLC, headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., produces Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge and Mopar(R) brand vehicles and products. Its product lineup features some of the world's most recognizable vehicles, including the Chrysler 300, Jeep Wrangler and Dodge Charger. The Company sells and services vehicles in more than 125 countries around the world. The operations outside North America have been experiencing year-over-year sales increases since 2004, with a record number of vehicles sold in 2007. The Chrysler Foundation - the primary source of charitable grants made by Chrysler - annually supports hundreds of charitable organizations with an emphasis on community growth and enrichment, education, arts and culture, public policy, youth development and disaster relief programs throughout the United States and, increasingly, the world. Chrysler is a unit of Cerberus Capital Management.

About HAP

Headquartered in Detroit, Health Alliance Plan is a nonprofit health plan serving 545,000 members and 2,000 employer groups. HAP is a subsidiary of the Henry Ford Health System, one of the nation's leading regional health care systems. The health plan serves companies of all sizes through the flagship HMO, PPOs, Medicare Advantage plans, experience-rated, fully insured and self- funded products, SOLO individual plans and high-deductible health plans with compatible health savings accounts. The National Committee for Quality Assurance awarded HAP's commercial HMO and HAP Senior Plus, its Medicare Advantage HMO, Excellent Accreditation.

About Henry Ford Medical Group

The Henry Ford Medical Group is one of the nation's largest group practices, with 1,000 physicians and researchers in more than 40 specialties who staff Henry Ford Hospital and 25 Henry Ford medical centers in Southeast Michigan. It is part of Henry Ford Health System (, one of the country's leading health care systems, that integrates primary and specialty care with research and education.

About Blue Cross Blue Shield

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (, a nonprofit organization, provides and administers health benefits to more than 4.6 million members residing in Michigan in addition to members of Michigan- headquartered groups who reside outside the state. The company offers a broad variety of plans including: Traditional Blue Cross Blue Shield; Blue Preferred, Community Blue and Healthy Blue Incentives PPOs; Blue Care Network HMO; BCN Healthy Blue Living; Flexible Blue plans compatible with health savings accounts; Medicare Advantage; Part D Prescription Drug plans, and MyBlue products in the under-age-65 individual market. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

About Medco

Medco Health Solutions, Inc., (NYSE: MHS) is the nation's leading pharmacy benefit manager based on its 2007 total net revenues of more than $44 billion. Medco's prescription drug benefit programs, covering one in five Americans, are designed to drive down the cost of pharmacy health care for private and public employers, health plans, labor unions and government agencies of all sizes, and for individuals served by the Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Program. Medco, the world's most advanced pharmacy(TM), is positioned to serve the unique needs of patients with chronic and complex conditions through its Medco Therapeutic Resource Centers(R); its diabetes pharmacy care practice, Liberty Medical; and its specialty pharmacy operation, Accredo Health Group, Inc. Medco is the highest-ranked independent pharmacy benefit manager on the 2007 Fortune 500 list. On the Net:

About CVS Caremark

CVS Caremark (NYSE: CVS) is the largest provider of prescriptions and related healthcare services in the nation. The Company fills or manages more than 1 billion prescriptions annually. Through its unmatched breadth of service offerings, CVS Caremark is transforming the delivery of healthcare services in the U.S. The Company is uniquely positioned to effectively manage costs and improve healthcare outcomes through its 6,200 CVS/pharmacy stores; its pharmacy benefit management, mail order and specialty pharmacy division, Caremark Pharmacy Services; its retail-based health clinic subsidiary, MinuteClinic; and its online pharmacy, General information about CVS Caremark is available through the Investor Relations portion of the Company's website, at, as well as through the pressroom portion of the Company's website, at

SOURCE Southeast Michigan ePrescribing Initiative
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