Real Time Prescription Monitoring system (RTPM)

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Prescriptions for all patients, including veterans, are monitored through a state or territory’s Real Time Prescription Monitoring (RTPM) system. This is to assist doctors and pharmacists ensure the safe use of medicines.

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What is the RTPM system

RTPM is a nationally implemented system, designed to monitor the prescribing and dispensing of controlled medicines to reduce their misuse in Australia.

Each state and territory manages its own regulatory system to limit the authorities or permits for controlled medicines.

For state/territory-specific information, contact:

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RTPM and your veteran patients

Veterans are no different to everyone else when it comes to RTPM. However, here are some things to be aware of when treating DVA clients.

My patient doesn’t have a Veteran Card

The RTPM uses Individual Health Identifier (IHI)s to capture and monitor your patients’ prescription data. Medicare card holders and recipients of DVA benefits will have an IHI. If your patient served in the defence forces and doesn’t have a Veteran Card, you can ask them to contact DVA.

My patient has concerns about what the RTPM means for them

Health practitioners are encouraged to discuss the information contained in the RTPM system with their patients and explain the benefits of having access to this information as part of their care.

The RTPM systems are not integrated with My Health Record. While My Health Record may contain dispensed prescription medication information, due to the ‘opt out’ provisions, this data may be incomplete.

Patients, including DVA clients, are not able to opt out of having their monitored medicine prescription information recorded in RTPM systems.

My patient is concerned about their privacy

Reassure your veteran patient that only health practitioners involved in their care are authorised to view their RTPM record. Patient searches by health practitioners are logged and can be audited to monitor inappropriate use. Authorised state and territory health and other regulatory officers may also access RTPM to manage its operation. They can exercise powers or perform functions under the Medicines and Poisons Act 2019 relating to monitored medicines.

The Commonwealth, including DVA, does not have access to the RTPM information. DVA continues to have access to information on our clients’ medicines funded by us through the Repatriation Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

My patient is concerned about impacts to funding

Reassure your patient that the purpose of RTPM is to assist doctors and pharmacists to support safe use of medications – it is not related to the funding of medications.

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