- New York’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) has achieved healthcare interoperability with PDMPs in 25 other states and Washington DC, according to a recent announcement from New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.
"By removing unnecessary roadblocks to proper care and providing more resources and training with these additional measures, New York will continue to lead the nation in implementing innovative and effective solutions to save lives, prevent overdoses, and provide the treatment those suffering from addition so desperately need,” said Cuomo.
The New York Department of Health assisted in enabling interoperability between New York’s PDMP and those in 25 other states to improve health data exchange about patient prescription information between programs. New York providers will now have secure access to nearly 150 million patients’ controlled substance health records.
The state’s providers will also now be able to search the PDMP for patient health records from any participating state to get a comprehensive picture of a patient’s controlled substance and prescription history. This capability will be especially helpful for providers seeing patients in the Tri-State area, as well as other areas that cross state borders.
“These initiatives will provide resources that will save the lives of many New Yorkers and give those struggling with addiction the opportunity to get connected to treatment so that they can begin a path towards recovery,” said Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services Commissioner Arlene Gonzalez-Sanchez.
Improving provider access to patient prescription data will allow providers to more easily spot patients who may be visiting multiple doctors for several prescriptions or misusing prescription drugs such as opioids.
"In New York State, there are as many different pathways to recovery as there are people struggling with substance use disorder,” said Assembly Committee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Chair Linda Rosenthal.
“I applaud this effort to bolster a broad range of support services and programs, to track where and when opioids are being prescribed and to expand the universe of sites equipped to offer life-saving treatment,” she continued.
The New York Department of Health has worked to improve health data exchange and interoperability between PDMPs through a systematic approach first targeting PDMPs in bordering states. The initiative has since expanded to include states across the Northeast, the Eastern Seaboard, and elsewhere.
"Under Governor Cuomo's leadership, we are taking bold and aggressive actions to combat the opioid epidemic and save lives,” said Health Commissioner Howard Zucker, MD. “Too many New Yorkers are battling addiction in our communities, and these measures will make a difference in our continued efforts to turn the tide in their favor."
The Department of Health will annually review all agreements between states to ensure compliance with applicable statues and health data access, exchange, and security protocols.
“With these additional responses, New York is reinforcing our steadfast commitment to combat this crisis and help individuals on the road to recovery,” said Heroin and Opioid Task Force and Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul.
Last month, the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) advocated for interoperability improvements and EHR integration with PDMPs as an effective way to curb the opioid epidemic.
CHIME submitted recommendations to the Senate Committee on Finance to improve the quality and access of treatment for opioid use disorder and other substance use disorders.
In addition to improving interoperability and EHR integration, CHIME also recommended CMS leverage the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) improvement activities performance category to incentivize use of electronic prescribing for controlled substances (EPCS) and CDC opioid guidelines.