New DEA Regs Allow “Meaningful EHR Use”

The Department of Justice (DOJ) Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) issued an interim final rule with comment period on March 31, revising its regulations to allow pharmacies, hospitals, and physicians to use electronic prescriptions for controlled substances.

Known as Schedule II drugs, controlled substances include opioids, stimulants, depressants, hallucinogens, and anabolic steroids.

According to the DEA, the new regulations enable pharmacies and health care providers to utilize existing modern technology and integrate prescription records into other electronic medical records (EMRs) more directly. The DEA foresees a reduction in paperwork for registrants, prescription forgery, and human error.

Regarding the rule, HC Compliance News says: “This opens a door for practioners to prove they are ‘meaningful EHR users’ under the ARRA and HITECH and thus be eligible for incentive payments beginning next year.”

Comments on the Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances; Final Rule must be received by June 1.


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