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NY Legislators Seek Delay In Electronic Prescriptions

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New York legislators want to postpone until next year the deadline for doctors to issue only electronic drug prescriptions, saying many still lack needed federal approval. The bill has passed the state Senate and the Assembly Health Committee.

Assemblyman John McDonald, sponsor and practicing pharmacist, says he expects the full Assembly to pass it in two weeks.

The electronic prescriptions — connected to a central database that doctors and pharmacists can check — are intended to prevent fraud and doctor shopping for painkillers.

McDonald says about 98 percent of pharmacists will meet the March 27 deadline but many won't because of contracts with various computer system vendors who still need Drug Enforcement Administration approval.

A spokesman for Gov. Andrew Cuomo says they'll review the bill.

© 2015 AP

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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