CMS formally delays EPCS enforcement

NCPA December 4, 2020

CMS will delay enforcement to Jan. 1, 2022, the mandate for electronic prescribing for controlled substances established in the SUPPORT Act. While CMS finalized the original Jan. 1, 2021, deadline for adoption for prescribers in the CY 2021 Physician Fee Schedule, the agency is delaying compliance while it develops rulemaking for the waivers and enforcement processes required by the legislation. CMS encourages prescribers to adopt the EPCS standard as soon as possible to reduce their burdens while the agency continues to use stakeholder feedback to establish penalties and waivers. Additionally, under the SUPPORT Act, neither pharmacies nor Part D plans are responsible for verifying if the prescriber is EPCS compliant or has a waiver for exemption. NCPA submitted comments to the RFI regarding implementation of the LTC pharmacy exemption and the PFS. NCPA will continue to work with the agency to ensure that CMS respects the LTC carve-out included in the SUPPORT Act and community pharmacy’s the proper role for EPCS.