Southern California physicians embrace MEDeMORPHUS electronic prescription programme

Santa Ana 23 September 2002Four Southern California medical groups have licensed MEDeMORPHUS' wireless, point-of-care device to improve the accuracy and efficiency of prescribing medications for their patients. The four medical groups: High Desert Medical Group in Lancaster, Harriman-Jones Medical Group in Long Beach, Bright Medical Group in Whittier, and Riverside Medical Clinic in Riverside, will add approximately 250 physicians to MEDeMORPHUS' growing base of physicians now using its e-prescribing systems in seven states, bringing total subscribers to nearly 2500.

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"These four medical groups are committed to promoting an efficient system which provides better patient care by utilising mobile technology that physicians need at the point of care", stated David Grant, president and chief executive officer of MEDeMORPHUS. "We believe these new partnerships with leading Southern California medical groups represent a critical expansion for MEDeMORPHUS in the rapidly growing e-prescribing market."

The MEDeMORPHUS system is a wireless, point-of-care e-prescribing device which helps make the prescription process more efficient and less time-consuming and helps reduce the likelihood of medical errors. MEDeMORPHUS can also help enhance a physician group's revenue stream with simple time-saving measures and administrative efficiencies, allowing doctors to spend more time with patients. The system also can automate mail service enrollment, reduce prior authorisation calls, and helps ensure prescription compliance.

"With MEDeMORPHUS, our physicians will be able to increase the speed by which patients get their medications, improve care, and increase patient satisfaction by eliminating the frustration and hassle factor traditionally involved", stated William Stimmler, M.D., family practitioner and chairman of the board at Bright Medical Associates Inc. "The MEDeMORPHUS technology can help our physicians select the recommended first-line drugs that are on a health plan's formulary, while overseeing drug-to-drug interaction. We believe the MEDeMORPHUS system will help our physicians provide better care for their patients."

Automating the prescription writing process will help increase accuracy, save time, check for potentially dangerous combinations of medications and ensure that the orders for medical care are completed when the patient is in the office. For example, when the doctor enters a prescription for a patient in the office, the MEDeMORPHUS device will verify that the prescribed drug is covered by the patient's health plan and check whether or not the drug conflicts with other medications the patient is taking that could cause allergic reactions or potentially damaging side effects. The prescription is then transmitted directly to a local printer or mail order service.

"We believe e-prescribing will help improve the quality of care that we deliver", stated Andrea De Coro, Pharm.D., director of Clinical Pharmacy Services at Harriman Jones Medical Group. "The MEDeMORPHUS handheld electronic prescribing system can help our physicians detect potential drug interactions, alert them to drug allergies, and provide them with access to important drug information at the time of prescribing. We also anticipate that MEDeMORPHUS will help reduce prescription errors since prescriptions will be printed instead of handwritten."

From its foundation in electronic prescription processing, MEDeMORPHUS is expanding its platform to include a variety of applications, all available in a handheld device. New services provided by MEDeMORPHUS will include dictation of patient notes, billing, clinical reference, and the ability to order services such as laboratory tests and medical equipment for home use.

"We selected MEDeMORPHUS because it has the support of health plans", stated Charles Myaing Lim, M.D., medical director, High Desert Medical Group. "Pharmacy benefits are constantly changing. Now, physicians must keep track of what medications are covered according to the formulary and health plan coverage. The MEDeMORPHUS system will help automate this process, making it more efficient without compromising the care of the patient."

Within the next few months, new enhancements will be added to allow prescriptions to be transmitted directly by either fax or electronic data interchange to retail pharmacies.

"MEDeMORPHUS was the right choice for us since we wanted to align ourselves with a progressive technology company to best serve our patients", stated Dr. Ravi Berry, chairman of Information Technology for Riverside Medical Clinic. "Besides the prospect of saving us time and money, MEDeMORPHUS is also working on newer, more advanced modules that will include automated dictation and transcription services. These services will connect with the e-prescribing tool for a comprehensive solution that reduces administrative hassles and further streamlines the office work flow."

David Grant and leading industry analysts believe there is significant growth potential for e-prescribing tools. Approximately 6 percent of the United States' physicians use e-prescribing today, but that is expected to increase to 20 percent by 2005, according to consultants Fulcrum Analytics Inc. and Deloitte Research.

MEDeMORPHUS, formerly Rx-Connect, is a division of PacifiCare Health Systems, one of the United States' largest health and consumer services companies. The cornerstone of the company is a wireless, point-of-care device that reduces the time physicians, their staffs, and patients often spend seeking access to and approval of pharmaceutical drugs, while reducing medical errors and managing escalating health care costs.

PacifiCare Health Systems has approximately $11 billion in annual revenues. Primary operations include managed care products for employer groups and Medicare beneficiaries in eight western states and Guam serving approximately 3,3 million members. Other speciality products and operations include pharmacy and medical management, behavioural health services, life and health insurance, and dental and vision services.


Leslie Versweyveld

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