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E-Prescribing Enrollment Increases in Michigan

April 3, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
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The Steering Committee of the Southeast Michigan ePrescribing Initiative (SEMI) announced its initiative to get physicians in the southeast Michigan area to use handheld devices to more safely and efficiently prescribe medications has reached more than 7,500 physicians in the area. Overall, this was a 33 percent increase from a year ago.

Moreover, those physicians have submitted more than 40 million electronic prescriptions since the program began in 2005. The initiative was launched by a coalition that includes automakers Motors, Ford Motor Company, and Chrysler Group LLC, as well as the UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Health Alliance Plan, Henry Ford Medical Group, Medco Health Solutions, Inc., CVS Caremark Corporation and Catalyst Rx.

It also aims to help doctors with training and a support system to help integrate ePrescribing into their practice. SEMI physicians, the organization reports, routinely surpass one million prescriptions each month. In addition, the organization says physicians received nearly 923,000 medication allergy alerts, resulting in more than 250,000 (or 27 percent) of those prescriptions being changed or canceled by the prescribing doctor;

"My colleague and I use ePrescribing for nearly all of the medications we prescribe for our patients, and it has significantly reduced the time we spend writing prescriptions. We spend less time on phone calls related to the medications we prescribe, and it has made it easier for our office staff to manage refills for our patients," Dr. Kevin Frankel, a family practitioner in Oakland Southfield Physicians, PC, and SEMI participant., said in a statement "This technology also helps us better understand what our patients are taking, and if they are using their medications properly and as often as they should, which leads to better care and fewer errors -both of which are valuable features for our busy practice."

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