Magazine article Drug Topics

Fax Happy

Magazine article Drug Topics

Fax Happy

Article excerpt

It was a good day for consultant pharmacists--and their patients--when the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration gave the go-ahead for faxed Schedule II prescriptions in long-care facilities.

The DEA's recent relaxation of its policy on faxed prescriptions for Schedule II controlled substances was welcome, news to R. Timothy Webster, executive director, American Society of consultant Pharmacists. "We're very excited about it," he told Drug Topics. "We appreciate the DEA taking this first step toward answering some of the problems our members have had or a long time with how Schedule II prescriptions are initiated and received."

Robert Miller, consultant R.Ph. in Buffalo and active ASCP member, is pleased with the DEA's move as "a beginning toward a more liberal policy" on Schedule II drugs. However, he, like many consultant pharmacists, would like the DEA to extend its policy "directly to the physician's order."

In pre-fax days, DEA's policy created problems in some long-term care facilities because physicians are generally not present in nursing homes. When a patient needed a Schedule II drug, most often for severe acute or chronic pain, it was tough for the pharmacist to get an original prescription before dispensing the medication. …

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