Under new Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) rules , physicians can now write electronic prescriptions for Schedule III, IV, and V controlled substances. However, Texas law still requires physicians to use a written prescription form for Schedule II drugs.
To keep the electronic prescriptions secure, the new rules require physicians to use a two-factor authentication credential to verify their identity before they can sign the prescription electronically. The DEA says physicians can use "two of the following credentials: something you know (a knowledge factor), something you have (a hard token stored separately from the computer being accessed), and something you are (biometric information). For example, the physician can have two out of three of the following: a password, a cryptographic key, or a fingerprint."
E-prescribing software that can meet the DEA standards will most likely not be ready for six months or more. That process is still to be determined.
For more information, tools, and resources on e-prescribing, go to the TMA E-Prescribing webpage . If you would prefer to speak to a TMA staff member, call (800) 880-5720 or e-mail the TMA HIT Department .
Action , July 15, 2010