Minn. Gov. signs mandate for e-prescribing, EHS systems


ST. PAUL, Minn. Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty has signed legislation to mandate the use of electronic prescription technology and require implemented electronic health records systems to be Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology-certified, according to published reports.

The provisions are in the 2008 Minnesota Health Care Reform Act. Provisions in the law are designed to increase the availability and coverage of health insurance, improve chronic care management, reform payment processes, make pricing and quality data transparent, and fund programs to combat tobacco use and obesity. The law also requires a study on ways to reduce claims adjudication costs and adopt more uniform methods of processing claims.

The new law mandates use of electronic prescribing by Jan. 1, 2011. Prescribers and dispensers must use either the Health Level Seven messaging standards or the National Council for Prescription Drug Programs’ SCRIPT standard to transmit prescriptions and prescription-related information.

The law does not mandate use of electronic health records. But to ensure EHR systems are interoperable, they must be CCHIT-certified. Further, the EHRs must meet the e-prescribing provisions of the law.

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