National Patient Safety Initiative Launched To Provide Free Electronic Prescribing To Every Physician In America
Leading Healthcare and Technology Companies Join in Support of Initiative: Aetna, Allscripts, Cisco, Dell, Fujitsu, Google, Intel, Microsoft, Sprint Nextel, SureScripts, WellPoint, Wolters Kluwer Health
Washington, DC - January 16, 2006 / PRNewswire / â A coalition of the nation's most prominent technology companies and leading healthcare organizations announced today a national initiative to provide free electronic prescribing for every physician in America. The National ePrescribing Patient Safety InitiativeSM (NEPSISM) is the first nationwide effort to improve patient safety by offering a solution to the medication errors that harm millions of people each year.
Preventable medication errors injure at least 1.5 million Americans and claim more than 7,000 lives each year, according to a July 2006 study by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Sciences. In an effort to reduce these errors, the IOM has called on all of the nation's physicians to adopt electronic prescribing by 2010.
"While medication errors and adverse drug events can be common and serious, electronic prescribing is clearly a tool that can dramatically reduce errors and improve patient safety," said Nancy W. Dickey, currently President of the Health Science Center and Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs at the Texas A&M University System and formerly President of the American Medical Association. "Yet despite the many benefits of electronic prescribing, physician adoption is still modest. The situation calls out for a solution that will overcome the barriers many physicians face in adopting this life-saving technology."
The challenge, according to the eHealth Initiative, is that fewer than 1 in 5 of the nation's practicing physicians currently process prescriptions electronically. Studies indicate that most physicians have been reluctant to adopt electronic prescribing largely because of the cost of the systems, and a perception that the technology requires too much time to learn and install.
NEPSI will help address those barriers by providing physicians simple, safe and secure electronic prescribing at no cost. NEPSI is led by Allscripts (Nasdaq: MDRX), the leading provider of clinical software, information and connectivity solutions that physicians use to improve healthcare, and by national sponsor Dell Computers, Inc. (Nasdaq: DELL), the world's leading computer company. Other technology companies sponsoring NEPSI are Cisco Systems Corp., Fujitsu Computers of America, Inc., Google, Inc. â the coalition's Search Sponsor â Microsoft, Corp., Sprint Nextel Corp., SureScripts, Inc., and Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.
"Medication errors represent a significant challenge for our nation and we know we can and we must do better by taking action â right now," said Glen Tullman, Chief Executive Officer of Allscripts. "The National e-Prescribing Patient Safety Initiative brings together a diverse group of technology companies, payers and physicians who share a commitment to one remarkable idea â that providing free electronic prescribing for every physician will ultimately reduce errors and improve care. This initiative delivers a simple yet comprehensive solution, and represents an on-ramp to a complete Electronic Health Record."
Kevin Rollins, President and Chief Executive Officer of Dell, NEPSI's national sponsor, commented, "We are proud to add sponsorship of the NEPSI Coalition to the growing list of healthcare-related initiatives that Dell is helping to lead. Information technology holds great promise as a means to help upgrade our nation's healthcare system, and we look forward to working with partners such as Allscripts to help demonstrate its potential to improve the quality, efficiency and productivity of healthcare in the America."
In addition to Dell, a number of the largest technology companies in the world are sponsoring NEPSI including Microsoft and Intel.