Doctors receive a greater push to switch to electronic prescriptions with new Medicare incentives.
Wired PR News.com – More emphasis is now being placed on getting physicians to make the switch to going paperless when administering prescriptions. As reported by the Associated Press (AP), beginning in January, Medicare will provide bonus pay for some doctors who do.
Some have stated attempts at getting doctors to make the transition from using prescription pads to e-prescriptions on a broad scale have not been very productive. As noted in the AP report, only 10 percent of doctors in the United States have so far jumped on the bandwagon.
With an e-prescription, doctors send prescriptions provided for patients directly to drug stores. This is said to be a safer and more efficient means of getting needed medications to patients because it reduces wait times and eliminates mix-ups caused by the difficult to read handwriting of some physicians.
Reasons provided in the report for many doctors hesitating to make the switch include program costs in the range of $3,000 per doctor, the banishment of narcotic prescriptions (which make up approximately 20 percent of total prescriptions administered) from the e-system, and issues related to a lack of universal network technologies currently in use by many small drugstores and pharmacies.