Prescription Drug Track Down

What started out as a program to track where patients get their prescription drugs in Kentucky has expanded to Ohio. This week the Kentucky All Schedule Prescription Electronic Reporting system, or KASPER, launched a data exchange with the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System, or OARRS.

KASPER manager Dave Hopkins says so far 12 Kentucky physicians are testing the program

."The fact that that pilot's up, running, and we've got users sharing data means that we've made a huge advance in being able to take this statewide between Ohio and Kentucky and to start bringing other states on board so that we're all sharing."

Now a doctor or pharmacist in Kentucky can check if their patient has been prescribed drugs in Ohio without logging on to a different network. That should make it easier to drug abusers who to multiple doctors for medication.

The PMIX project has been in the works for several years, but recently the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, or NABP, developed its own data sharing network called the InterConnect. Last week the InterConnect went live with a prescription monitoring program between Ohio and Indiana.

"We're hoping that the states will all come together, and along with the different vendors, and NABP, and everybody involved in both sides of this, to come up with a consensus architecture."

Hopkins says a meeting is scheduled for next Thursday to discuss possibilities for a single software interface that could be used nationwide.

For now, Kentucky officials will continue testing the PMIX program with Ohio, with plans to open it up to more physicians and pharmacists in a couple of months.