We’ve all been there: Enjoying a much-needed vacation, listen to waves crashing on the shore or hitting the slopes, when all of the sudden your alarm goes off. It’s your phone reminding you to take your medicine. You open the bottle only to discover you’re running dangerously low.
Now, your once-relaxing vacation has been ruined by countless hours spent finding and visiting an emergency room or urgent care – which may or may not be out of network – in hopes of getting a refill.
Enter OneVA Pharmacy, a new program offered through the Department of Veteran Affairs that aims to make refilling prescriptions while on vacation easier. As of June 2018, OneVA is up and running in all veteran medical centers and hospitals. By registering at your local VA clinic, veterans can forego the long, time-consuming process of refilling needed prescriptions.
“Right now, throughout the entire country, if you have a Veteran living in California and travel to Florida and want to have their prescription, they can do that. They go to the pharmacy and use this product to get the prescription filled,” explained Ms. Angela Chow, an implementation manager with VA’s Office of Information and Technology (OIT).
- Patient information is available at all VA pharmacies
- Veterans can visit any VA pharmacy for refills
- Veterans can easily refill most prescriptions while traveling
This new process improves efficiency and saves time for both Veterans and pharmacists. By providing streamlined access to Veterans’ active and refillable prescription information and enabling the ability to request prescription refills directly from any VA pharmacy, pharmacists can fulfill window refill requests much more quickly.
All prescription medications can be refilled at any VA pharmacy with the exception of:
- Controlled substances
- Opioid or narcotic pain medications
- Anti-anxiety medications
The VA estimates that nearly 8,000 prescriptions have been filled through the program, saving countless hours of veteran and provider time.
Despite the successful implementation of OneVA during the first phase of the project, there is still work to be done to make this service even greater for Veterans and pharmacists. Dr. Robert Silverman, PharmD, VHA’s project manager for OneVA Pharmacy shared, “Phase two will allow VA pharmacies to address many of the integrated workflow functions not present in OneVA Pharmacy phase one.”