Minnesota achieved the nation's highest rate of electronic prescription use during 2011, according to Surescripts.

Surescripts, Safe-Rx Awards, e-prescribing, electronic prescription use, e-script, Harry Totonis, e-prescribing network, retail pharmacies, Marty LaVenture, Minnesota Department of Health, Safe-Rx Evangelist Award

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Surescripts: Minnesota is top e-prescribing state

August 1st, 2012

ARLINGTON, Va. – Minnesota achieved the nation's highest rate of electronic prescription use during 2011, according to Surescripts.

The e-prescribing network said Tuesday that Minnesota achieved the No. 1 ranking in its 7th annual Safe-Rx Awards. Prescribers in Minnesota routed 61% of prescriptions electronically.

Rounding out the top 10 states in e-script use, were Massachusetts, South Dakota, Delaware, New Hampshire, Iowa, North Carolina, Maine, Vermont and Michigan. Surescripts noted that Minnesota, New Hampshire and Vermont were new to the top 10 for its annual e-prescribe ranking.

The rankings are determined by an analysis of data that measures e-script use by doctors, pharmacies and payers in each state.

"Minnesota has made impressive gains in the adoption and use of all three components of e-prescribing," Harry Totonis, president and chief executive officer of Surescripts, said in a statement. "This is helping health care providers improve work flows and patient care and sets the stage for expanding the use of electronic data for additional improvements in health care quality and delivery."

Nationally, 91% of retail pharmacies can receive e-prescriptions, according to Surescripts.  Massachusetts and New Hampshire have the highest rate of physician adoption at 86%, and nine states have over 70% of physicians electronically routing prescriptions.

North Dakota made the largest gains year over year, boosting its ranking from No. 47 to No. 18, Surescripts said. New Hampshire, Nebraska and Minnesota made double-digit gains in the ranking based on increased use of e-prescribing, including routing, medication history and benefit information.

"In Minnesota, there has been a strong commitment to a common e-prescribing objective by providers, pharmacies and payers statewide who worked collaboratively with the e-Health Initiative," stated Dr. Marty LaVenture, director of the office of health information technology and e-health at the Minnesota Department of Health. "We have benefited from the strategic use of assessment data that helped us identify and respond to the gaps and needs associated with e-prescribing. Policy initiatives and grant and loan programs also helped increase adoption and use for providers and pharmacies in underserved areas of the state."

LaVenture is this year's recipient of Surescripts' Safe-Rx Evangelist Award, given annually to the person or organization whose work has made an extraordinary impact on the awareness and use of e-prescribing as a way to reduce medication errors.