Monday, November 28, 2011

Controlled Substance eRx: Is it live?

According to this Surescripts press release "a select number of certified and audited vendors and their users located in states where EPCS (E-Prescribing of Controlled Substances) is legal" have "begun the initial deployment of EPCS." When this trial period is complete, possibly January 1, EPCS will be made available to all.

Is your eRx live with EPCS yet?

If so, please reveal their identity.


  1. You don't say where you practice, but yes, EPCS is live in limited areas. As noted in the press release, currently, physicians are able to send controlled substances to live pharmacies in a couple of states, with more pharmacies and more states coming live over the next few months. As far as I know, only prescribers using DrFirst's Rcopia stand-alone e-prescribing or one of the EMRs that use DrFirst for their e-prescribing* can actually send EPCS so far.

    *DrFirst has >200 partner EMR applications. Not all are set up for EPCS at this time.

    Peter N. Kaufman, MD
    Chief Medical Officer

  2. Dr. Kaufman, thanks for the info, and good on ya for finally getting this badly needed capability online.

    Grant Chester at the Washington State Board of Pharmacy assures me there is no law prohibiting EPCS here as of today, but he also assured me that EPCS is still prohibited under federal law and suggested I call DEA to verify, so I'm not sure whether to believe him or not!

  3. Mr. Chester was either misunderstood during the conversation or was incorrect in his statement. EPCS has been legal under Federal rule since June 2010, but due to the new requirements posted in March 2010, it was not logistically possible until this past summer when EPCS became a reality. One of the large chains should be going live in Virginia this week, with roll-out more widely to follow (inside info so I can't say which one yet). More info about the Federal regulations can be found here: