Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Tracking Prescription Deliveries

The Veterans Health Administration together with the VA’s Office of Information and Technology sponsored an Information Technology Innovation Program selecting 26 innovations prototypes out of 6500 submissions from employees. One of the submissions suggested a need to track mail prescriptions on-line.

Currently, the VA sends the majority of outpatient prescription medications to their patients through the postal system. In order for VA patients to track the delivery of their mailed medications, they must call their local VA Medical Center. This has resulted in an increase in phone calls to pharmacy staff and interferes with efficiency and satisfaction.

The VA is working to improve their web-based portal “My HealtheVet” for patients to use when they want to access their personal health information, order refills of medications, and communicate with healthcare providers.

When this is accomplished, the functional prototype will display a link within the “My HealtheVet” portal to the VA’s Consolidated Mail Outpatient Pharmacies. The plan is to provide a web service that will pass information on to the “My HealtheVet” portal, and at that point, the patient’s tracking information will be given to the patient upon request.

Last month, the VHA issued a Request For Information (RFI) seeking possible contractors with ideas on how to deliver the RFI entitled “On-Line Tracking of Mail Prescription Delivery System Enhancement”. The VA issued the RFI to find out from contractors if commercial items were available or could items be modified to meet the VA requirements needed to enhance the mail prescription delivery system. The market information was received in June and when the VA completes their market research from the information received, they will make their decision based on the requirements. At that time, the VA may enter into a competitive solicitation that will be posted.