Programs & Research

The Center for Improving Medication Management

LearnAboutRxSafety.org

Developed in conjunction with the National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE), www.LearnAboutRxSafety.org is a resource for families and all individuals seeking information on medication safety.

LearnAboutRxSafety.org includes information and resources to help protect families from the unintended consequences of improper medicine use, avoid medication errors, and improve adherence to medicine therapy. Presented to visitors as "Medicine Safety: A Tool Kit for Families," the site offers practical advice about:

  • how to avoid medication misuse;
  • getting the facts about your family?s medicines;
  • keeping a family medical record;
  • safe medicine use with children, older adults and during pregnancy; and
  • questions to ask your health team.

NCPIE produced the online tool kit with an advisory panel featuring experts from the American Academy of Family Physicians, AARP, BlueCross BlueShield Association, The Center, CVS Caremark, Humana Inc., Intel Corporation, the Medical Group Management Association, the National Consumers League, SureScripts-RxHub and Walgreen Co. A special feature of the Web site is licensed content from NCPIE?s Medication Use Safety Training for Seniors™ (MUST for Seniors™) program, as a special resource for parents or other family caregivers involved in assisting older adult family members with their medication management.

Consumer organizations, provider and payer organizations and other groups interested in promoting medication safety and adherence for consumers can download a Web button to post to your own site and link to www.LearnAboutRxSafety.org. You can download the button here. For additional information on promoting the program contact Kate Berry at (703) 921-2176.

High-Low Connected EMR Practice Evaluation

The objective of this project is to determine why similar practices using similar EMR systems experience different levels of success with e-prescribing adoption, utilization, workflow, and physician, staff and patient satisfaction. The project will also analyze how the technology can improve business performance and quality of care delivered. Upon identifying key predictors of success and failure, The Center for Improving Medication Management and its founders will then formulate and disseminate best practices to implement and worst practices to avoid.

A small number of structured site visits will be conducted with practices that process a high and low number of prescriptions electronically using EMR systems from Allscripts Touchworks, NextGen, and eClinicalWorks. Each of these systems are certified to connect to the Pharmacy Health Information Exchange™, operated by SureScripts®, and all have achieved advanced certification status Surveys will be conducted with a broader number of practices if necessary to gather additional information.

Consumer Toolkit

The Center for Improving Medication Management is partnering with the National Council for Patient Information and Education (NCPIE) to develop a web-based consumer toolkit on medication safety and prescription adherence. The launch of the Consumer Toolkit will coincide with a pharmacy driven e-prescribing consumer awareness campaign that is launching at the end of April 2008.

Get Connected Program

The "Get Connected" program was launched on March 4, 2008, under the auspices of the Center for Improving Medication Management and in conjunction with the American Academy of Family Physicians, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Physician Assistants, American College of Cardiology, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Osteopathic Association, and Medical Group Medical Association.

The program Web site, www.GetRxConnected.com contains urgent information and guidance for an estimated 150,000 prescribers located throughout the U.S. that are currently using electronic medical record (EMR) and other clinical software to fax prescriptions to pharmacies. Computer-generated faxing of prescriptions not only and not via fax. (Important Note to Physicians Using EMRs: Most EMR users believe that they already send prescriptions to pharmacies electronically - i.e. they are unaware that it is far more likely that their EMR is generating faxes that arrive on paper at the pharmacy's fax machine. These computer-generated, faxed prescriptions will not be in compliance with the new Medicare Modernization Act (MMA) Part D regulations.)

Through GetRxConnected.com, physicians and their staffs can generate a free, personalized E-Prescribing Readiness report that identifies whether or not their EMR is certified to connect to pharmacies electronically. If their system is certified, the report provides details on how they can request an electronic connection to pharmacies through their vendor.

The Get Connected program is equally intended for physicians and practice management professionals who have yet to invest in EMR or other clinical software. The site provides guidance on how to evaluate and acquire technology that supports e-prescribing.

GetRxConnected.com also helps physicians and practice management professionals assess the financial impact of e-prescribing through an interactive feature that allows them to calculate an estimate of the time and resources their practice is currently dedicating to the manual processing of prescriptions.

E-Prescribing: Becoming Mainstream Practice

eHealth Initiative and the Center for Improving Medication collaborated to develop the report "E-Prescribing: Becoming Mainstream Practice". The effort was undertaken to provide an update to eHealth Initiative's 2004 report, "Electronic Prescribing: Toward Maximum Value and Rapid Adoption," in light of the significant progress that has taken place over the past four years and the anticipated momentum in continued growth in e-prescribing.

This report is intended to set the stage for rapid growth in the adoption and use of a technology that can significantly improve medication safety, practice efficiency, and consumer convenience, and has important implications for management of medication costs and improvement of medication-related health outcomes. Its focus is primarily on prescribing within physician practices and community pharmacies, rather than within the hospital or long term care facility settings.

A Guide for Health Care Payers to Improve the Medication Management Process:

The Center for Improving Medication and eHealth Initiative collaborated to develop "A Guide for Health Care Payers to Improve the Medication Management Process." It is a practical guide for health care payers to begin to evaluate how they can improve the medication management process and achieve benefits for their organizations and for the people whose health care they purchase.

A Consumer's Guide to E-Prescribing:

A collaborative report from The Center for Improving Medication and eHealth Initiative, "A Consumer's Guide to E-Prescribing" focuses on the benefits of e-prescribing for consumers. E-prescribing can lead to a reduction in medication errors and injuries, greater convenience for patients, a more streamlined refill process, better management of medication costs, and healthier patients by helping people remember to take their medications properly.

Understanding the Benefits of E-Prescribing:

A pamphlet for consumers that explains at a high level how e-prescribing works and the potential benefits. "Understanding the Benefits of E-Prescribing" was developed as a collaborative effort between The Center for Improving Medication and eHealth Initiative.

Payer Summit

The Center for Improving Medication Management is partnering with the Council for Affordable and Quality Healthcare (CAQH) to convene a payer summit on e-prescribing. The program may ultimately include payers, employers, pharmacies and providers.

Medication Adherence Demonstration Project

The Center is working on a medication adherence demonstration project with a research team from Harvard Medical School and an e-prescribing software vendor. The project will test the impact of the availability of user-friendly, real time access to patient medication history at the point of care through electronic prescribing software on patient medication adherence.

Adherence Coalition

The Center is considering a forum to convene interested stakeholders such as pharmaceutical companies, payers, employers, etc., to share lessons learned and build collective knowledge on adherence programs.