Regional patients and patients with high medication needs have led take-up of the digital script list, called My Script List, which has today hit the milestone of one million scripts since its launch in April. In the eight months since launch, it has demonstrated its value in helping to avoid medication disruptions that would otherwise occur as a result of events such as floods, isolation due to COVID or travelling.
One of two pharmacies servicing the community and surrounding areas, Life Pharmacy is consistently one of the highest users of My Script List, nationally and in New South Wales. According to Jack Buckley, lead pharmacist, owner and manager, having a high number of patients registered with the digital script list was invaluable in allowing Life Pharmacy to get medications to patients who were isolated by floods.
“Many of our patients were cut off from town and isolated by the severe flooding in November. Without My Script List and electronic scripts, they would not have been able to access their medications. Instead, patients could use telehealth consults to obtain an electronic script, which we could immediately view and dispense via My Script List. We delivered patient medications to SES workers, who ferried medications to patients across flood waters."
“Being in a rural area, My Script List has really helped our patients and our pharmacy in finding new ways to prevent disruptions to medication supply. With My Script List, the patient and pharmacy both have immediate access to the electronic script, so there is no faxing, emailing or trying to find where it has gone.
This makes it really easy for patients and for us, whether dealing with periods such as Covid, the current floods, or when they are on holiday.”
According to Paul Naismith, pharmacist and CEO of Fred IT, the digital list was vital in supporting the community to be able to avert otherwise potentially life-threatening disruptions in medication.
“My Script List is the final and vital link that connects patients and health professionals electronically and in real-time nationally. Prior to the introduction of the first active script list in April, such a rapid community response involving GPs, pharmacies and SES workers to get medication to patients isolated by flood
waters would not have been possible. The ability to view a real-time digital list of a patient’s current scripts and repeats means that pharmacists and health professionals and community organisations are able to respond quickly and inventively in supporting communities with life-saving care.”
According to Jack Buckley,
“The big impact for our pharmacy is that it streamlines dispensary workflow and increases workflow efficiency by as much as 30%. Once we saw its efficiency, our motto was to try to sign up every patient who came in with an electronic script.”
Regionally based pharmacies represent 65% of the top 20 users of My Script List and higher usage in both Victoria and New South Wales. Across Australia, My Script List users have an average of 9.2 scripts each, suggesting that My Script List is helpful for patients with more complex health issues requiring multiple
My Script List is a Department of Health conformant Active Script List (ASL) created by Australia’s two prescription exchange services, eRx Script Exchange and MediSecure. It is available to all pharmacies across Australia with integrated dispensing software.
Pharmacists can assist patients to register for the free My Script List service, and request access to view and dispense from a patient’s list.
For further information:
Information and resources on electronic prescriptions for patients and healthcare providers are available on the Australian Digital Health Agency website.
WhatsApp is one of Australia’s most popular messenger apps, and home to the Australian Government’s official Covid-19 channel. The launch of prescription ordering via WhatsApp means that it will be even easier for patients to view and manage their electronic prescriptions. Patients will also now have the flexibility to order their electronic prescriptions via WhatsApp, SMS or email.
Patients will also be able to use WhatsApp to quickly and easily access their My Script List to message their pharmacy to arrange for a prescription to be dispensed. My Script List is Australia’s first active script list, launched in Tasmania in April 2021, and now available to all states and territories. It provides GPs, patients and pharmacies with visibility of all of a patient’s current prescriptions and repeats in one digital list for the first time. The new script list complements the existing methods of the paper script and digital token – the digitised script sent by the doctor to a patient’s email or phone – which was introduced in May 2020.
According to pharmacist and CEO of Fred IT Group, Paul Naismith,
"The addition of WhatsApp ordering makes it significantly easier for patients to manage their medications, and means that a significant number of patients now have the flexibility to choose between using SMS, email or WhatsApp to order their prescriptions. We know that more and more, consumers are favouring one app that they can use for many interactions. As the most widely used chat app in Australia, this means that the WhatsApp options for script ordering will be available to the most people possible"
In 2020, Fred won an Australian Digital Health Agency (ADHA) Innovation Challenge for its work on developing WhatsApp as a way to enable Australians to easily access their prescriptions electronically.
WhatsApp prescription ordering uses a WhatsApp chatbot and includes end-to-end encryption. Pharmacies using Fred dispensing software have access to WhatsApp prescription ordering. This is available via MedView Patient Connect, which is part of MedView Flow.
MedView Flow is a new workflow tool to help pharmacies manage the dispensing changes which will occur with the introduction of electronic prescribing in Australia in 2020.
Electronic prescribing means that patients will be able to present their prescription electronically using a mobile phone, email message, or other pharmacy app, in addition to the traditional paper script.
MedView Flow addresses this problem by bringing paper-based and electronic scripts into the one electronic workflow (or queue). It has been developed to ensure that all Australian pharmacies can embrace electronic prescribing whilst continuing to provide efficient and safe care, regardless of whether patients present their script electronically or via paper.
According to pharmacist and CEO of Fred IT Group, Paul Naismith,
"Fred has invested heavily in the development of MedView Flow to support Australian pharmacy’s transition to a contemporary, digital healthcare environment. We want to ensure that all Australian pharmacies can be on the front foot with this change, both meeting the Australian government’s expectation that pharmacies are ready and offering their patients the convenience digital scripts deliver.
“Fred strongly supports Australia’s move to electronic prescribing, which brings real flexibility for pharmacy patients to decide how they want to present their scripts. In the current climate where health efforts are focused on slowing the spread of COVID-19, we expect that the flexibility of being able to present scripts electronically will be an important support to pharmacies and customers.”
“Electronic prescribing extends safety measures such as the electronic transfer of prescriptions that help reduce potential medication errors and contribute to better sharing of real-time information between healthcare professionals. Ultimately it will also significantly reduce the paperwork that health professionals deal with.”
Leading Australian pharmacy groups Priceline, Amcal, Guardian, Discount Drug Stores, Advantage and Ventura Health have committed to introducing MedView Flow so that their member pharmacies can provide patients with choice in their prescription management.
MedView Flow is a cloud-based workflow tool which can be used with any dispensing software. It will be made available FREE of charge (for up to 5 devices) so that all Australian pharmacies, including independent pharmacies, can be ready when their first patients present with a fully electronic script.
To find out more or to register, please visit medview.com.au/flow
Last year, 372 Victorians died as a result of the overdose of prescription medicines. SafeScript will help health professionals deal with this growing problem by providing them with an accurate and up to date picture of patient prescriptions. This clinical data will help pharmacists and GPs to identify and support patients who are at risk.
According to Paul Naismith, pharmacist and CEO of Fred IT Group,
“ As pharmacists and health professionals, we see how many people in the community are negatively affected by the misuse of prescription medicine. As a company, we are extremely grateful to have the opportunity to work with the Victorian Government on reducing the devastating impact of medications misuse. ”
“ ... I am proud that with SafeScript we are able to build on that backbone in a way that will make a real difference to the community. ”
SafeScript will be rolled out in Victoria in 2018. It will utilise real-time prescription data captured via the electronic transfer of prescriptions through eRx Script Exchange and MediSecure to monitor Schedule 8 medications and other high-risk medications.
According to Telstra Health Managing Director Mary Foley,
“ Telstra Health welcomes the opportunity to play a role in this significant Victorian Government initiative that has real potential to save lives. Through our partnership with Fred IT Group’s eRx Script Exchange and in conjunction with MediSecure, we will provide a vital clinical alerting tool and capability to enable doctors and pharmacists to identify and support patients with potential dependency issues with prescription medications. ”