Prescribing drugs that are considered dangerous has become a major issue as the opioid crisis continues in the US. A number of healthcare organizations are taking steps to ensure these drugs do not fall into the wrong hands. Several states have also introduced additional regulations for drugs that may be misused or abused if the prescriptions are not safeguarded. Ohio is one of those states that has implemented requirements around how prescriptions are written and how patients can have those prescriptions filled.
The Ohio Positive Identification Law, introduced in 2016 and reviewed in 2019, establishes requirements for healthcare providers regarding Board of Pharmacy rules for what constitutes a valid prescription. The Law defines “Positive identification” as a “method of identifying an individual who prescribes, administers, or dispenses a dangerous drug.” The law also states that positive identification “shall always be used to document the:
(a) Dispensing, compounding, or repackaging of a drug;
(b) Removal and possession of a controlled substance to administer to a patient;
(c) Waste of a controlled substance.
(d) All activities relating to the practice of pharmacy.
All providers in Ohio must keep “a printout of every transaction that is verified and manually signed within a reasonable period of time by the individual who prescribed, administered, or dispensed the dangerous drug.” Elation helps providers follow this requirement by providing an Rx Report feature that documents all prescriptions made by each provider within a desired timeframe.
The Rx Report, when printed and manually signed by the prescribing provider every 24 to 72 hours (the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy highly recommends Rx Report documentation every 24 hours), satisfies positive identification requirements. Every minute of every day must be accounted for, including weekends and holidays. Positive identification documentation must be kept for three years and provided in the case of an audit.
Electronic prescriptions are legal and accepted in Ohio. In fact, the Ohio Board of Pharmacy has stated that it “understands the benefits of electronic drug record keeping systems” and the additional safeguards that can be seen in electronic prescriptions. Electronic prescriptions written by Ohio Elation providers will be received by pharmacies without a manual signature displayed, which will satisfy Ohio’s prescribing requirements and will improve the security of the prescription.