Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing Act

Everything you might want to know about I-STOP

Electronic prescribing has become mandatory for both controlled and non-controlled substances in the state of New York since March 2017.

What is I-STOP?

The Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing Act, commonly known as I-STOP, helps establish a real-time, online, controlled substance reporting system. This system necessitates that prescribers consult the prescription monitoring registry before dispensing or prescribing Schedule II, III, or IV controlled substances.
Moreover, with I-STOP, pharmacists who previously didn't have access to the registry will now have access - for reviewing the controlled substance history of persons who have been prescribed once or more with controlled substances.
I-STOP aims at bringing down the opioid addiction-caused deaths and over-prescription of painkillers. This is achieved by the implementation of enhanced electronic monitoring processes. This act has been passed in 2012 as part of the continuing drive for enabling programs for monitoring, tracking, and protecting against abuse of prescription medication.

Need for I-STOP

There has been a considerable rise in medication overuse, leading to increased number of deaths in the United States. During the past few decades, several deaths were being attributed to medicine abuse, most of which were related to pharmaceutical abuse. Since medication overdose rate has reached astounding rates, the urgent need for a system to control medication abuse was felt.

Impact of I-STOP on Practices

Prescribers in the state of New York, from August 27, 2013, were required to consult the Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) Registry while writing prescriptions for Schedule II, III, and IV controlled substance. For this, prescribers are required to have a health commerce system (HCS) account. This account can be applied online through the New York State Department of Health.

Benefits of I-STOP

One major objective of I-STOP is enabling practitioners to better assess their patients who are being treated using controlled substance. Moreover, I-STOP helps in the following:
Prevention of prescription fraud:Moving to a digital prescription mode ensures that forging, stealing, or altering prescriptions is not possible.
Prevention of medication overdose and abuse: Improved monitoring and tracking of prescriptions for controlled substances reduces medication overdose and abuse.
Prevention of prescription errors: : Minimizing medication errors becomes possible with modern prescription technology. Furthermore, e-prescribing allows direct integration of prescription records into EHRs.
Prevention of doctor shopping/double doctoring: I-STOP facilitates providers to access patients' prescription history. This helps in preventing patients seeking multiple physicians with the intention of getting additional prescriptions.

Bureau of Narcotics Enforcement (BNE) Registration

Individual practitioners have to register their certified EPCS software with the BNE. Practitioners need to provide details such as name of the software, version, and vendor.