DEA allows controlled drug e-prescribing, handing pharmacy advocates a key victory

Capping a decade-long effort by pharmacy and technology interests to modernize all facets of the prescription prescribing and dispensing process, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has struck down legal impediments to the electronic prescribing of controlled substances. In a June 1 announcement, the DEA issued its interim final rule allowing for the paperless prescribing of controlled substances. Publication of the new rule clears away the last barrier preventing doctors and pharmacists from shifting controlled medicines into information technology and the digital age, and it marks a dramatic victory for e-prescribing advocates.