ePrescribing now available to patients

August 1, 2022

Northern Health patients can now access prescriptions electronically with Electronic Prescribing (ePrescribing) – a digital version of a paper prescription.

During a telehealth consultation, the healthcare provider can send electronic prescriptions to patients or carers via SMS or email. The new innovation has been implemented to enable telehealth patients to receive their prescriptions in a more timely manner.

Once the electronic prescription has been received, the patient or carer can take the prescription to the pharmacy personally, or send it to the pharmacy electronically.

Northern Health staff will always check with their patient, to ensure they are able to receive a prescription via email or SMS. Clinicians can still post a paper copy to telehealth patients.

Tracey Webster, Telehealth and Virtual Care Coordinator, said Northern Health is investing in ePrescribing to support telehealth services for patients, which includes the Victorian Virtual Emergency Department (VVED), and will shortly include both outpatients and mental health services.

“ePrescribing provides a greater choice for patients, and allows them to get their medications from the community pharmacy of their choice,” she said.

“It also makes prescribing and dispensing of medications more efficient for patients and staff. With ePrescribing, our staff will have more clinical time to spend with patients, and less time on administration work involved with paper prescriptions.”

MediRecords – an ePrescribing software – is working with Northern Health to send electronic prescriptions direct to patients or their carers.

“ePrescribing is just another example of Northern Health’s commitment to digital innovation and patient-centered care. This will be a real game changer for VVED – it will improve our workflows and simultaneously provide convenience and choice to our patients,” said Loren Sher, Clinical Director VVED.

Vinod Chellaram, Director of Pharmacy, said MediRecords is working in partnership with Northern Health to provide an efficient paperless system that is safe and secure for clinicians to provide electronic prescriptions to patients, whilst protecting patient privacy.

Lachlan Hayes, Haematologist, said ePrescribing is a great example of our health service harnessing technology to support and care for the vulnerable members of the community, and those isolating at home with COVID-19.

“ePrescribing is stepping up to the expectations of the wider community who are increasingly using similar technology in their everyday lives. Quite rightly, patients ask, ‘if I can shop online, order food and supplies through my smartphone, why can’t the hospital provide my scripts to my phone?’ We will now be able to say, ‘yes, we can do that for you, and here’s how,’” Lachlan said.

Telehealth patients are encouraged to speak to staff during their virtual consultation about how to access ePrescribing.

Featured image: Tracey Webster, Telehealth and Virtual Care Coordinator, and Vinod Chellaram, Director of Pharmacy.