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Medtech

E-Prescribing Software (E-Health)

Edenlab delivered a full-fledged e-prescribing national system, built from scratch for the Ukrainian government.

At present, around one million e-prescriptions are created each month with a total amount of generated e-prescriptions of 36.6 million.

Background

The National Affordable Medicine Reimbursement Program in Ukraine, as well as several similar programs, was designed to provide financial support to specific social groups. People with serious health problems, such as cardiovascular diseases, bronchial asthma, type 2 diabetes, etc., can get medications for free. Pharmacies provide the medications, and the government refunds those expenses later.

 

Developing an electronic prescribing system (e-prescription) is part of the national E-Health project, aimed to digitize the healthcare system of Ukraine. E-prescribing makes the operation of national healthcare programs much easier. It is a technology framework allowing physicians and other medical practitioners to write and send prescriptions to pharmacies that participate in the program, in a digital form instead of using handwritten/faxed notes or phone calls. 

E-prescriptions allow:

  •  – doctors to create electronic prescriptions for patients
  •  – patients to get free (or partly reimbursed) medications according to the program, using prescription codes
  •  – pharmacies to aggregate data necessary for refunds
  •  – the government to form population health statistics and forecast medication purchases

Challenges of running national reimbursement programs with paper-based prescriptions:

  •  – Paper prescriptions have several disadvantages for patients. They take a long time to produce, can’t be updated remotely, are closely linked to a particular doctor, etc.
  •  – There was no unified database with all the prescriptions. Hence, national health monitoring and planning the purchase of medications were impossible. 
  •  – Pharmacies had to wait for a long time (sometimes more than six months) for paper reports on prescriptions to be completed and refunds issued. Consequently, they were reluctant to participate.
  •  – Pharmacists could provide inaccurate information about medication availability. Moreover, there was a risk of fraud.
  •  – In receiving data on paper prescriptions with a lag of six months, officials could not react swiftly, calculate financial metrics, or make amendments to the budget.
  •  – Collecting paper prescriptions and reporting on them, as well as storing those documents, increased transaction costs.

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