January 1, 2020

What prescribers need to know

Providers are required to use electronic prescribing for Schedule II-V substances. In an emergency situation, Schedule II drugs can be dispensed to a patient via oral authorization. However, within seven days, the prescribers must send a written prescription to the pharmacy that includes the phrase "Authorization for emergency dispensing". 

A prescription for a Schedule III, IV, or V controlled substance cannot be filled or refilled more than six months after the initial prescriptions issue date. No prescription can be refilled more than five times. 

All prescribers and dispensers are required to consult the state Prescription Monitoring Program before prescribing or dispensing any controlled substances for the first time and every three months thereafter for patients on long-term opioid therapy. 

There is no specific penalty for those who do not comply. 

Register with Rhode Island's PDMP here: http://health.ri.gov/healthcare/medicine/about/prescriptiondrugmonitoringprogram

For details instructions on how to comply with the mandate:

To see how RXNT can help you get certified:

Rhode Island Exceptions

  • Electronic prescribing is not available due to temporary technological or electronic failure. 
  • It is impractical for the patient to obtain substances prescribed by electronic prescription in a timely manner and that the delay would have a negative impact on the patient's health. The prescription duration cannot be more than a five-day supply. 
  • An electronic prescription would have a negative impact on or delay patient care for reasons outlined in the bill
  • A prescription is issued for a drug for which the FDA requires the prescription to include certain elements that are not able to be accomplished with electronic prescription. 
  • The prescription will be dispensed at a pharmacy outside of the state without access to electronic transmission of controlled substances. 
  • The prescription is being transmitted to a Veteran's Administration pharmacy to be dispensed or the prescription is being dispensed through an Indian Health Services facility. 
  • A practitioner prescribes a drug under a research protocol. 

These exceptions must be documented in patient's medical records.