The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy has completed development of its platform to link state prescription monitoring programs (PMPs), providing more effective communication in the battle against prescription drug abuse, misuse and diversion.


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NABP finishes work on prescription monitoring hub

June 7th, 2011

MOUNT PROSPECT, Ill. – The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy has completed development of its platform to link state prescription monitoring programs (PMPs), providing more effective communication in the battle against prescription drug abuse, misuse and diversion.

NABP said late Monday that it will now focus on working with state PMP administrators and their software vendors to finalize the software interface for the NABP PMP InterConnect so that PMP systems can communicate with the hub and facilitate interoperability among PMPs.

"Data sharing among states is an important part of early detection of prescription drug abuse and doctor shopping to allow appropriate intervention and prevention of substance abuse and possible diversion of controlled substances," NABP stated.

According to the association, many state PMP administrators have started to use the NABP PMP InterConnect by setting up their PMPs' access rules and populating the "rules engine" on the platform. The rules engine is the tool that gives states autonomy and control over how the InterConnect will manage information requests to and from other participating states in the program.

To date, PMPs in Connecticut, Indiana, Mississippi, North Dakota, Ohio, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia have executed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to participate in the InterConnect, according to NABP. PMPs in Arizona, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan and Nevada also plan to participate and have MOUs in the final review stages, the association said.

More than a dozen other PMPs have also expressed their intent to participate in the program but must first obtain clearer authority to share data across state lines, procure software, complete development on their own PMP, or move the MOU further along in the review process, NABP added.

NABP unveiled plans for the PMP InterConnect last November, saying it came in response to a need by PMP administrators for a way to facilitate the sharing and exchanging of data among PMP systems.

Slated to launch in July, the InterConnect is a secure communications exchange platform that will enable the transmission of PMP data across state lines to authorized requestors while ensuring that each state's data access rules are enforced. The interconnect won't store any data or inhibit the legitimate prescribing or dispensing of prescription drugs.

PMPs collect prescription data for controlled substances so doctors and pharmacists can get a full picture of patients' controlled substance use. Access to such information aids in early detection of prescription abuse and "doctor shopping," allowing appropriate intervention and prevention of substance abuse and possible diversion of controlled substances. Current systems have lacked interoperability and data sharing among states, making harder to detect abuse and diversion because, for instance, doctor shoppers could obtain prescriptions from doctors and pharmacies in multiple states.

NABP said it will cover the annual fees for all participating states for at least five years, and the association is aiming for states to never have to pay annual fees to participate in the InterConnect. NABP added that it will work to offset costs associated with amendments to existing PMP software, which are needed to interface with the InterConnect. In addition, the association said it will cover all costs related to the development and ongoing operation of the program, and the NABP Foundation will offer unrestricted educational grants to states needing more assistance in enhancing their PMPs.

 

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