System will Enable Data Sharing Across State Lines
Originally published in the March 2011 NABP Newsletter
NABP has begun work with state prescription monitoring program (PMP) administrators to develop PMP InterconnectTM, with a pilot launch scheduled for spring 2011, and full availability planned for third quarter 2011. PMP Interconnect is a communication hub that will, for participating PMPs, facilitate the transfer of PMP data across state lines to authorized users.
NABP has contracted Appriss, Inc, to develop and host PMP Interconnect, and the Association convened a meeting on January 5-6, 2011, with PMP administrators to discuss details as to how the secure system will work. This planning session gave participating PMP administrators and PMP technical specialists from programs across the country the opportunity to define for NABP and Appriss the needed functionalities for PMP Interconnect. Participants were able to discuss a variety of needs and concerns, from the basics, such as the types of reports that PMPs need to generate, to system requirements for securing prescription data. Participants also discussed the variation in regulations governing state PMPs and how PMP Interconnect can transfer data while ensuring that each state’s PMP requirements are met. Collecting this information from a variety of PMP experts provided NABP and Appriss the details needed to begin designing PMP Interconnect.
Participating stakeholders stressed the importance of meeting security protocols to protect all prescription data that passes through PMP Interconnect. The system will not store prescription data. Instead, when one state PMP requests data from another state PMP, prescription data is transferred through PMP Interconnect immediately, provided that it meets the other state’s security requirements. The prescription data will remain secure throughout the process via encryption protocols. When data is being transferred in response to a request, only a limited amount of routing data will be accessible to PMP Interconnect in order to route the request from the disclosing PMP to the requesting PMP.
NABP is taking steps to ensure that the initial process for participating in PMP Interconnect is both time and cost efficient for PMPs. Key to this efficiency, PMPs choosing to participate in PMP Interconnect can enter into a single agreement with NABP, as opposed to a PMP developing separate contractual agreements for data sharing with every other participating PMP. The agreement with NABP will include the PMP’s requirements, according to its state laws, for providing prescription data to other state PMPs. NABP, in partnership with Appriss, will take on the responsibility of enforcing each state PMP’s requirements. Specifically, PMP Interconnect will serve as a “rules engine” and will ensure that any requests to the system for information from a state’s PMP meet all regulatory requirements for PMP requests in that state.
All states with active or developing PMPs will be invited to participate, including states where the PMP is housed in an agency other than the board of pharmacy. Participation will involve little or no cost to the state.
Implementation of PMP Interconnect will begin in spring 2011 with several pilot states and PMP application vendors participating.
Appriss, Inc, brings to the project ample experience interfacing with multiple software vendors and stakeholders for similar application development projects. They also maintain a robust security infrastructure and have obtained nationally recognized certifications for data security.
As the project moves forward, participants from the PMP Interconnect planning session, along with representatives from state and federal agencies and other interested stakeholders, have been invited to join a steering committee which will begin meeting in March 2011.