More incentive for pharmacies to take up ETP
Community pharmacies can receive up to $2000 per outlet under a new electronic prescription scanning incentive (ePSI) negotiated between the Pharmacy Guild and the Department of Health and Ageing.
The incentive will be funded through a reallocation of existing electronic transfer of prescriptions (ETP) funding within the 5th Community Pharmacy Agreement (5CPA) and will therefore be cost neutral.
To qualify for the ePSI, pharmacies will need to meet or exceed specified ETP scan rates over two review periods, with a rate of 15 per cent of all original prescriptions by November 2013 the first target.
Pharmacies also need to be eligible for the Pharmacy Practice Incentive (PPI) Community Services Support priority area. This priority area includes five elements: the needle and syringe program, opioid substitution program, return of unwanted medicines (RUM), staff training or eHealth.
eHealth in community pharmacy includes the use of appropriate dispensing software, broadband internet connectivity, PBS Online claiming and the use of an electronic prescription exchange service.
One of the requirements under the 5CPA is that community pharmacies will also use and contribute to the PCEHR in the future.
Pharmacy Guild national president Kos Sclavos said in a statement that the incentive is an important step in supporting community pharmacy’s role in improving the use of medicines and reducing the number of adverse medication events by embedding ETP into practice.
“This is a significant and cost-effective step towards boosting the use of electronic prescription technology, reaping tangible benefits in terms of accuracy, efficiency, and patient medication management,” Mr Scalvos said.
“The take up of electronic transfer of prescriptions by Australian community pharmacies has been exceptionally good over the past two years. This measure will add new impetus to the transition and maximise the benefits for all patients.”
If a pharmacy is already registered for the PPI Community Services Support priority area, their PPI registration does not need to be changed to participate in this new incentive.
The pharmacy Practice Incentives Program is worth $344 million over the course of the 5CPA.
Posted in Australian eHealth