Electronic prescribing has long been touted as a way to reduce medication errors and healthcare costs, but one retail pharmacy chain has found another use for it.
Walgreens announced in March that it would send immunization records directly from Walgreens and Duane Reade stores, as well as Take Care Clinics, to primary care providers over Surescripts’ electronic prescribing network using the network’s Clinical Interoperability services. In addition, later this year, it will start sharing immunization data with local and state public health agencies and Take Care Clinic patient summaries with primary care providers.
The announcement represents not just the potential offered by e-prescribing, but also the benefits of having retail pharmacies offer immunizations. Now patients can get their vaccinations at the pharmacy or retail clinic and ensure that their providers know about it. This will become especially important as the variety of vaccinations that pharmacists can administer increases.