Magazine article Drug Topics

Time Is Money

Magazine article Drug Topics

Time Is Money

Article excerpt

Independent R.Ph. launches prescribing software

A search for ways to drive down costs has led a Missouri independent pharmacy owner to jump into the growth industry of software that electronically links prescribers and pharmacists.

The frustrating and costly hours spent by pharmacy personnel on the telephone with doctors' offices drove Bob Davis into the arms of electronic prescribing. As the owner of three pharmacies and three durable medical equipment stores in Independence, he saw the computer hookup to the prescriber's office as a way to turn wasted time from a cost center to a revenue center. And he figured physicians, just as frustrated as R.Ph.s, would also benefit from the linkage. The result was the e-Scrip software he developed with a local programmer.

"I do $4 million a year, and I'm always thinking of ways to save, even if it's one-tenth of one percent," said Davis. "Salaries total a huge, glaring figure-20% or 30% of my costs. The biggest disruption and time-waster was the telephone."

The real time and money savings on both ends of the hookup come from refill prescriptions, said Davis. New Rxs are not a hassle for the physician, who just jots down the medications on the script and hands it to the patient. "Refills on eScrip are the biggest advantage, especially for general practitioners," he said. 'Their offices have to be on the phone 60 to 70 times a day dealing with calls and return calls. This is the quickest way to get refills authorized."

Physicians, not pharmacists, are going to drive the electronic prescribing market, said Davis, e-Scrip's president/CEO. …

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