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Military Health System

Background

The Office of the Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, Defense Health Agency (DHA) is implementing an Integrated Pharmacy System (IPS) throughout the Military Health System (MHS). In Phase I of the IPS implementation, the Department of Defense (DoD) contracted with Computer Science Corporation (CSC) to establish a centralized data repository and develop a common patient drug profile for all DoD beneficiaries. To accomplish this, CSC subcontracted with a pharmacy claims manager in the private sector, MedE America*. The program for moving the data between the MHS activities and private contractor is referred to as the Pharmacy Data Transaction Service (PDTS).

All MHS activities, military pharmacies, TRICARE network pharmacies, and the Home Delivery Pharmacy contractor are required to electronically transmit selected patient, drug, and provider data elements to PDTS. The data elements are transmitted to Emdeon over communication lines using national standard message codes established by the National Council for Prescription Drug Programs (NCPDP). Also, each MHS activity is required to receive additional standard codes for warning messages and alerts generated from the PDTS transactions.

The PDTS allows DoD to improve the quality of its prescription service and reduce pharmaceutical costs by conducting Prospective Drug Utilization Reviews (ProDURs) on each new and refill prescription against the beneficiary's complete drug profile. The central data repository also allows DoD to monitor and track patient usage and provider prescribing patterns throughout the MHS.

The Pharmacy Operations Support Contract (POSC) was established as an element of the DoD Pharmacy Operations Division. As the name implies, the POSC provides customer support throughout the MHS to everyone involved in the process of dispensing outpatient prescriptions.

** In November 1999, MedE America merged with Healtheon, WebMD, and Medcast forming a new company called Healtheon/WebMD. On August 4, 2005, the company name changed from WebMD to Emdeon.

Last Updated: June 21, 2022
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