KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Doctors Adjusting (Or Not) To E-Prescribing, Smartphones

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will penalize doctors who fail to reach electronic prescribing rules.

Medscape: Physicians Get Another Chance to Avoid E-Prescribing Penalty
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has been giving bonuses to physicians and other clinicians for e-prescribing — defined as sending a script directly from their computer to a pharmacy's computer — under an incentive program created by Congress in 2008. However, the program also calls for CMS to reduce a physician's Medicare reimbursement by 1% — a "payment adjustment" — in 2012 if he or she failed to meet the agency's e-prescribing requirements in 2011 (Lowes, 3/23). 

Kaiser Health News: Doctors Smart Phones And iPads May Be Distracting
Doctors who carry mobile devices are often hit with a flurry of texts, e-mails, Facebook messages, tweets and other notifications that automatically pop up on the screen, [Dr. John Halamka] explains. And because the vast majority of smart phones and tablets are personal devices that belong to individual doctors, the problem can be hard for hospitals to control (Gold, 3/26).

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