How to Integrate Your EHR with the Pa. Prescription Drug Monitoring Program

Last Updated: Oct 17, 2017

Pennsylvania is moving forward with plans to integrate the Pa. Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) with electronic health records (EHRs) and pharmacy systems, with the goal of providing PDMP users with seamless access to prescription history.

Health care entities in the state that are legally authorized to prescribe, administer, or dispense controlled substances can now apply to integrate their health IT systems with the PDMP.

In an October 2017 communication, the Pa. Department of Health (DOH) announced that it has secured federal grants to cover the fees connected with integration service for Pa. health care entities that elect to connect their health IT systems to the PDMP until August 2019. Integration service does not include end-user analytic tools that assist with interpreting and visualizing PDMP data.

The authorized decision maker for a health care entity can apply for integration via an Integration Request Form. Eligible health care entitles include (but are not limited to) physician practices, ambulatory care units, acute care facilities, emergency care units, pharmacies, and drug treatment facilities.

In response to physician questions about EHR integration, the Pennsylvania Medical Society (PAMED) reached out to DOH for clarification about the application process. DOH shared these additional details that health care organizations should keep in mind:

  • Smaller independent physician practices and groups can apply for EHR integration. When applying, however, keep in mind that applications are prioritized based on organizational size, readiness to integrate, and date submitted.
  • Many of the more popular EHR vendors have already completed development work for integration. DOH expects that this will streamline the process.
  • Shortly after you submit your application, you will receive a welcome packet that explains the process. Health care entities will be required to sign and return the Terms and Conditions agreement and send a list of their providers.

For more information on EHR integration, visit DOH's webpage here.

More PDMP Resources

PAMED offers a variety of resources that can answer physician's questions about the PDMP, including:

  • A Quick Consult fact sheet that explains the responsibilities of prescribers and dispensers under Pennsylvania's PDMP law
  • CME sessions

Find out more at www.pamedsoc.org/PDMP.

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