Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances (EPCS) Q&A
Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances (EPCS)
Question: What is required to use electronic prescriptions for controlled substances (a.k.a. EPCS)?
Answer: On March 31, 2010, DEA published an interim final rule, Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances, that provides practitioners with the option of using electronic prescription software applications to prescribe and dispense controlled substances. 75 FR 16235. Specifically, DEA regulations permit practitioners and pharmacies to select software applications, which meet the requirements of 21 CFR 1311 subpart C to issue, receive, dispense, and archive electronic prescriptions. Refer to 21 CFR part 1311 for further information on all the requirements for using EPCS. Practitioners must ensure that a selected EPCS software application also complies with State, local and tribal laws in the jurisdiction in which they are licensed to practice. EO-DEA186, October 5, 2020
Question: May an individual practitioner sign and transmit electronic prescriptions for controlled substances?
Answer: Yes, provided the practitioner meets all of the following requirements: (1) The practitioner must comply with all other requirements for issuing controlled substance prescriptions in 21 CFR part 1306; (2) The practitioner must use an application that meets the requirements of 21 CFR part 1311; and (3) The practitioner must comply with the requirements for practitioners in 21 CFR part 1311. See 21 CFR 1306.08(a). EO-DEA114, July 23, 2020
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