NCPDP Foundation Awards $102,300 Research Grant to University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy to Evaluate the NCPDP/HL7 Specialty Medication Enrollment Standard

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Access to quality data through the Standard is critical for pharmacists to provide clinical care, fortify patient safety and accelerate access to specialty medications. The research project will measure and assess the quality of data obtained from EHRs using the Standard and will inform recommendations for enhancements to the Standard and specialty pharmacy workflows.

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The NCPDP Foundation Board of Trustees announced it has awarded a $102,300 research grant to the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy to evaluate the quality of data obtained from EHRs using the NCPDP/HL7 Specialty Medication Enrollment Standard. The Standard provides for the exchange of patient demographic data, as well as coverage, prescription, and clinical data for pharmacy dispensing of specialty medications. It also facilitates enrollment of patients in programs offered by third parties such as hub vendors and pharmaceutical manufacturers. The research project aims to evaluate the frequency at which information received by specialty pharmacy from EHRs is populated; evaluate the quality of information received by specialty pharmacy from EHRs using a comprehensive evidence-based data quality framework; and evaluate the clinical usefulness of information received by specialty pharmacy.

“This important research grant supports the NCPDP Foundation’s strategic initiatives to Enhance Patient Safety, Expand Patient Access to Care, and Expand the Role and Value of the Pharmacist,” explained J.W. Hill, MBAHCM, CNED, Executive Director, NCPDP Foundation. “Pharmacists, like other care providers, need access to quality patient data to assess medications for appropriateness, effectiveness, and safety to inform clinical decision making and improve patient care. For specialty pharmacy medications, patients with complex or chronic medical conditions can wait days, weeks or longer to get on their treatment regimen. The NCPDP/ HL7 Specialty Medication Enrollment Standard can help expedite the process, and this research will uncover the quality of the data obtained through the standard and its usefulness to clinical pharmacists.”

“The support from the NCPDP Foundation provides a key opportunity to assess data quality and usefulness in the specialty medication area which is an important and growing area of pharmacy practice,” said Terrence Adam, R.Ph., M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy. “Completing this work in the context of the NCPDP/HL7 Specialty Medication Enrollment standard will provide knowledge to help inform the data standard and pharmacy practice.”

“There’s no question that care providers are under intense pressure, and the care team is evolving in the wake of staffing shortages, provider burnout, and the shift to value-based care,” explained Melanie Marcus, Surescripts Chief Marketing Officer, and the NCPDP Foundation National Advisory Council (NAC) Chair for Role and Value of the Pharmacist. “It is critical that we work together through initiatives like this NCPDP Foundation research grant to simplify specialty medication workflows, build new innovations and forge partnerships so everyone who shares in a patient’s care can work at the top of their license as one team.”

The research grant was funded in part by Surescripts’ Founder’s Gift for Role and Value of the Pharmacist and in part by the Foundation’s $1 Million Endowment in honor of NCPDP Founder, Benjamin D. Ward.

About NCPDP Foundation
The NCPDP Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona and is affiliated with the National Council for Prescription Drug Programs (NCPDP). The NCPDP Foundation was established in December 2012 to support research, education, and charitable involvement within the healthcare industry. For more information, visit


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Janet Cabibbo
NCPDP Foundation
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