What is electronic prescribing?
Electronic prescribing is providing Australians with convenient access to their medicines. It will improve patient safety by reducing the risk of transcription errors.
Electronic prescriptions aren't mandatory and patients will have a choice to receive either an electronic or a paper prescription from their prescriber (but not both). Electronic prescriptions will continue to support a patient’s right to choose their prescriber and pharmacy to supply their medicines.
Both electronic and paper prescriptions will need to comply with the relevant Commonwealth and state and territory legislation requirements.
To generate an electronic prescription, you will need the capability built into your clinical information system.
Electronic prescriptions are being rolled out across Australia and are currently available by providing a ‘token’ for patients to receive access to their electronic prescription.
The Active Script List is a token management solution currently in development and will provide further convenience for patients, especially those who are on multiple medicines.
What are the benefits?
Benefits of electronic prescribing extend to the patient, healthcare provider and, more broadly, at a system level. These include:
- reducing administrative burden for healthcare providers and organisations (such as more effective management of prescription refill requests)
- supplementing delivery of telehealth services to ensure continuity of patient care
- providing an opportunity to protect community members and healthcare providers from exposure to infectious diseases (such as COVID-19)
- maintaining patient privacy and integrity of personal information.
Listen to the latest podcast
Hear from professionals who are already using electronic prescribing, discover the benefits and find out how to get ready for implementation.
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State and territory regulations
The same regulations for prescribing and supplying medicines exist for both paper and electronic prescriptions. Clinicians are required to adhere to the National Health Act and relevant state or territory regulations when prescribing and supplying medicines using an electronic prescription. This is particularly important for controlled medicines. Please contact your relevant jurisdiction for more information.