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Three States Sign on to Participate in NABP's Interconnected Prescription Monitoring System

MOUNT PROSPECT, Ill., March 22, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy® (NABP®) is pleased to announce that the prescription monitoring programs (PMPs) of North Dakota, Ohio, and Virginia have entered into agreements to participate in the PMP Interconnect™ system, currently under development. PMP Interconnect will allow PMPs across the United States to be linked, providing a more effective means of combating drug diversion and drug abuse nationwide.

PMPs collect prescription data for controlled substances so that physicians and pharmacists can get a complete picture of patients' controlled substance use. Access to this information plays a great role in early detection of prescription abuse and doctor shopping, to allow appropriate intervention and prevention of substance abuse and possible diversion of controlled substances. Current systems, however, lack interoperability and data sharing among states, making these efforts much more difficult to accomplish and making it easier for doctor shoppers to avoid detection by obtaining prescriptions from doctors and pharmacies in multiple states.  

"NABP thanks the North Dakota, Ohio, and Virginia PMPs for being on the forefront of PMP Interconnect with their signing of memorandums of understanding," says NABP President William T. Winsley, MS, RPh. "Participation of PMPs nationwide is a key component of successfully fighting the diversion and abuse of controlled substances. Creating a web of connected PMPs will enhance the benefits of these programs by providing the means for physicians and pharmacists to more easily identify patients with prescription drug problems, especially if that patient is crossing state lines to obtain those drugs."  

In addition, law enforcement and regulatory agencies, where authorized by state law, will be able to obtain information that will help them quickly identify attempts to illegally divert controlled substances across state lines. The PMP Interconnect, which is expected to launch in July 2011, is a highly secure communications exchange platform that will facilitate the transmission of PMP data across state lines to authorized requestors, while ensuring that each state's data access rules are enforced. The PMP Interconnect will not house any data, and the system will not inhibit the legitimate prescribing or dispensing of prescription drugs.

A steering committee made up of PMP administrators that are participating in the PMP Interconnect program will oversee the Interconnect. The PMP Interconnect, which can be utilized by any PMP regardless of where it is housed within the state, will be managed and administered exclusively to support the objectives of the participating PMPs and in support of NABP's mission to assist state boards of pharmacy in creating uniform standards to protect public health.

Understanding current state government funding challenges, NABP has made a commitment to finance the development and deployment of the PMP Interconnect and to fund the annual operating costs of the system for at least the first five years of operation. NABP has the financial resources and stability to provide this funding and will ensure that the PMP Interconnect meets its objectives. The NABP Foundation has received a $1 million grant from Purdue Pharma L.P. to support the deployment of the PMP Interconnect and is also soliciting unrestricted grants from other public and private entities that have a shared interest in enhancing the effectiveness of PMPs.

NABP is the independent, international, and impartial Association that assists its member boards and jurisdictions in developing, implementing, and enforcing uniform standards for the purpose of protecting the public health.

SOURCE National Association of Boards of Pharmacy
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