Security in prescription forms and pads is an industry ridden with fraud and drug diversion. But the prescription blanks approved vendors are fighting back to improve tamper-resistant forms and pads.
In 2007 Congress mandated outpatient prescription pads and forms to be written on tamper-resistant blanks. With the mandating it still left fraud to creep in with more than $5 billion estimated annually.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) does address counterfeiting, copying and modification. But, they do not offer guidance in preventing theft or falsely issued prescriptions. That is where government and state approved vendors are stepping up and heightening the security efforts through additional security features. Some of the security features that can be utilized are; repetitive hollow void patterns, thermochromic "Rx" ink, state seal background, security back print, unique ID and barcoding and microprinting. Although no one security feature can deviate all types of counterfeits the combination of all of the features can emphatically minimize the likelihood of forgeries.
One of the approved vendors, PBS-Professional Business Systems, is stepping up their fraud prevention with mandated prescription blank offerings. According to Ken Sperling, President of PBS, "With the new security features being added to prescription blanks it is getting harder and harder to alter or reproduce prescription blanks." Mr. Sperling adds, "Thus making criminals more desperate, deterring them from taking the additional steps to counterfeit the prescription blanks."
As tamper-resistant prescription blanks are an essential tool in the fight against prescription fraud and drug diversion, there are other ways avoid fraud such as; controlling access to the blanks, auditing, assigning separate responsibility, installing surveillance and of course routine education.
Overall, prescription fraud can be controlled, but there needs to be a concentrated effort on the vendors part, like Professional Business Systems as well as the doctors part to make a real difference.