Regulatory Brief

 Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances


Formal title: Docket Number [DEA-218P] Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has given notice of its proposed rulemaking on Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances.

Brief Description:

The Drug Enforcement Administration proposed to revise its regulations to provide practitioners with the option of writing prescriptions for controlled substances electronically. The regulations would also permit pharmacies to receive, dispense, and archive these electronic prescriptions. These proposed regulations would be an addition to, not a replacement of, the existing rules. The proposed regulations would also have the potential to reduce the number of prescription errors caused by illegible handwriting and misunderstood oral prescriptions.

AVMA Response:

The AVMA commends the DEA on identifying ways to facilitate the prescribing and dispensing of therapeutic controlled substances and on its ability to do so while also safeguarding the public health. While the AVMA appreciates that electronic prescriptions are helpful to many healthcare professionals, the use of electronic prescriptions would be very limited in veterinary medicine. The AVMA recognizes that the rule, if finalized, would create an option of electronic prescribing but would not mandate its use. This flexibility is necessary to meet the needs of veterinary practitioner registrants.

Background Document:

Status:

The AVMA responded on August 18, 2008. (PDF)