Give your prescription a head start.
Does Your Pharmacy Accept E-Prescriptions? Patient Resources

What is an E-Prescription?

Q: What is an e-prescription?
A: E-prescriptions are computer-generated prescriptions created by your healthcare provider and sent directly to your pharmacy.

Q: How does e-prescribing work?
A: Instead of writing out your prescription on a piece of paper, your doctor or other healthcare provider enters it directly into his or her computer. Your prescription travels from your doctor or other healthcare provider’s computer to the pharmacy’s computer. E-prescriptions are sent electronically through a private, secure, and closed network – the Surescripts network – so your prescription information is not sent over the open Internet or as e-mail.

Q: What are the benefits of e-prescriptions?
A: E-prescriptions are;

  • Fast - Your prescription arrives at your pharmacy before you leave your doctor’s office.
  • Convenient - You don’t have to make that extra trip to drop off your prescription at the pharmacy.
  • Legible - There is no handwriting for the pharmacist to interpret.
  • Economical - makes it easier for your doctor to prescribe the most cost effective medication based on your insurance coverage

Q: Will my prescription be ready when I arrive at the pharmacy?
A: As an e-prescription, your prescription has a head start, arriving in the pharmacist’s computer before you leave your doctor’s office. However, this does not mean that it will always be ready when you arrive at the pharmacy. The time needed to prepare your prescription can be affected by things like the number of prescriptions in the pharmacy’s computer, how quickly you arrive at the pharmacy after your doctor’s visit, and how many people are already waiting at the pharmacy.

Q: Can my healthcare provider send my prescription to any pharmacy I choose?
A: Yes. More than 93% of community pharmacies in the U.S. currently accept e-prescriptions, and more are doing so every day. If you do not want your prescription sent electronically, or your pharmacy does not yet accept e-prescriptions, your healthcare provider will print your prescription for you.

Q: Are there laws governing the privacy of e-prescriptions?
A: The privacy of your personal health information contained in all your prescriptions, whether written or electronic, is protected by a federal law and state laws. The federal law is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). HIPAA requires that your personal health information be shared only for the purpose of providing you with clinical care. E-prescriptions meet this requirement.

Q: How can I find out if my doctor or other healthcare provider uses E-prescriptions?
A: Visit to see which physicians are e-prescribing in your community. Or just ask your healthcare provider. Doctors and other healthcare providers who are not writing e-prescriptions and would like more information can visit


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