May 21, 2007
Florida physicians have begun supporting a statewide electronic prescribing initiative that aims to use incentives from health plans and the state to help physicians pay for the new systems, Healthcare IT News reports.
The initiative, called ePrescribe Florida, has received broad support from health plans and professional associations, which could make it a potential model for other states, Walt Culbertson, the initiative’s executive director, said. Supporters include:
- Blue Cross and BlueShield of Florida;
- Cigna Healthcare;
- The Florida chapter of the American College of Cardiology;
- Florida Medical Association;
- Humana; and
“To get them to adopt it, it will take incentives, a groundswell of patients asking for it and payers insisting that it’s part of their responsibilities as a network provider,” Culbertson said.
He said that getting physicians to evaluate the program will be the biggest challenge, adding that “before we get to funding, we have to stop and hear the message and look at the data about saving their staffs and patient time.”
Florida insurers last month also announced plans to develop a statewide multipayer electronic health record system, called the Availity Care Profile. The 23 leading e-prescribing vendors in the state are joining the insurers in the initiative (Bazzoli, Healthcare IT News, 5/21).