The Washington state Secretary of Health has issued a nine-month waiver from complying with the electronic prescribing requirements of RCW 69.50.312 (1).
In 2019, the Legislature passed Substitute Senate Bill 5380, updating Washington’s opioid prescribing laws. The measure encompassed several new directives, including the requirement for prescriptions for controlled substances to be communicated electronically beginning January 1, 2021, unless one of the authorized exceptions are met.
On June 22, 2020, WSDA — along with several other health care provider associations — received a letter from Secretary of Health John Wiesman noting the unprecedented toll the COVID-19 pandemic has had on Washington’s health care system and granting a nine-month waiver from complying with the electronic prescribing requirements of RCW 69.50.312 (1) for all health care providers authorized to prescribe controlled substances and subject to RCW 69.50.312 (1). The nine-month waiver will expire on September 30, 2021. At that time, all health care providers subject to the electronic prescribing requirement need to be in compliance with RCW 69.50. 312 (1) or meet at least one of the exemption criteria in RCW 69.50.312 (2), including a waiver from the Department of Health.
For more information about Washington’s opioid prescribing rules and how to comply, visit WSDA's Opioid Prescribing Resources page.