York County Medicine Winter 2019 - 36

YO R K C O M E D S O C . O R G

IN THE NEWS:

State Updates Its Interpretation
of E-Prescribing Law -
What This Means for Physicians
Last Updated: Oct 23, 2019

and were unable to comply with the law.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) has updated
its guidance on the state's e-prescribing law, which is set to take
effect on Oct. 24, 2019.

The Pennsylvania Medical Society (PAMED) was concerned
that this requirement could potentially force some practices to
stop prescribing controlled substances or even close altogether. In
September 2019, we sent this letter to DOH and asked them to
reconsider their interpretation.

The law - Act 96 of 2018 - mandates that all Schedule II through
V controlled substances, except when dispensed or administered
directly to a patient by a practitioner or authorized agent, other than
a pharmacist, to an ultimate user, shall be prescribed electronically.
This law replaces the traditional method of prescribing controlled
substances to a patient, i.e. paper prescription pads.

New Guidance on Exceptions for Practitioners
Who Lack EHR or Internet
In the DOH's original guidance on Act 96, it said that
practitioners would be required to apply for a hardship exemption
if they lacked either an EHR system or internet access but not both
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6
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York County Medicine | WINTER 2019

On Oct. 21, 2019, PAMED received a response from Secretary
of Health Rachel Levine, MD. She said that, based on our feedback,
DOH has updated their guidance concerning Act 96.
The revised guidance clarifies the requirements for practices
that do not have an EHR system but do have internet access (or
vice versa):
* The Department of Health will not take action against a
practitioner if the practitioner has an EHR system but does not
have internet access. Likewise, the Department of Health will not
take action against a practitioner if the practitioner has internet
access but does not have an EHR.


http://www.YORKCOMEDSOC.ORG

York County Medicine Winter 2019

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