Wednesday, May 16, 2018
They Really Seems To Be Dragging Their Feet On Getting This Going!
This appeared last week:
10 May 2018 — 6:05pm
Health authorities have no timeline for the introduction of a real-time prescription monitoring service to stop doctor shopping in NSW, an inquest into opiate deaths has heard.
NSW Chief Pharmacist, Dr Judith Mackson, told Deputy State Coroner Harriet Grahame that, despite government commitments to rolling out the service, the potentially lifesaving system was still far from being realised.
The Health Council of the Council of Australian Governments last month determined that a national model for real-time prescription monitoring would be created, with states feeding the data from their own systems into a federal one.
The inquest, being held at the NSW Coroners Court in Glebe, is examining paths to regulatory change against the backdrop of six fatal opiate-related overdoses in 2016.
Three of the victims had consumed fentanyl, a synthetic opioid 100 times stronger than morphine, and typically restricted to palliative care.
Real-time prescription monitoring gives doctors and pharmacists a history of all Schedule 8 drugs, such as fentanyl, methadone and oxycodone, prescribed to a particular patient to prevent them doctor shopping and to help patients receive timely intervention and referrals.
Tasmania is the only state with real-time prescription monitoring, with the Victorian government working to introduce its own this year.
But Dr Mackson said NSW would wait for the federal government before it implemented its system, citing logistical difficulties in the state forging ahead by itself.
The court heard one predicted complication was patients crossing state borders to access prescribed medication without scrutiny.
In her written statement tendered to the court, Dr Mackson said the system required the building of a national data exchange, as well as a significant upgrade to the software that would be used to connect doctors, pharmacists and NSW Health.
“A timetable for implementation has not been developed, and the costs to NSW to implement real-time prescription monitoring have not been determined,” Dr Mackson said in the statement.
In September 2016, the health department introduced ERRCD (Electronic Recording and Reporting of Controlled Drugs) software, which processes authorisations for prescribe-controlled drugs, but would need major upgrades to support real-time monitoring.
This really is descending into farce with finger pointing and so on. I wonder where the strong national leadership on this from the ADHA is, or is this not their role.
Posted by Dr David G More MB PhD at Wednesday, May 16, 2018