Step 5: Activate e-prescribing of controlled substances (EPCS) in iPrescribe

Prerequisite: Step 4: Patient Finder

To be able to electronically prescribe controlled substances (EPCS), you will need to complete ALL these steps: 

  1. Download the ID.me authenticator app 
  2. Confirm your desired address to receive a physical device 
  3. Have a reference verify your identity 
  4. Verify your identity as a prescriber via ID.me
  5. Enter a verification code received at your DEA-listed mailing business address (5-10 business days to receive) 

Select Activate EPCS 

1. Login to iPrescribe. 

2. To begin, select Activate EPCS from the main menu or a banner ad notification. 

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Install ID.me Authenticator App 

3. You will be prompted to download the ID.me Authenticator app and install it on your device.  

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4. When you are done open the iPrescribe app again. iPrescribe will ask you to confirm that you have installed the ID.me Authenticator app. 

Order Physical Authenticator Device (i.e., fob, token) 

5. Next, you will enter a mailing address of your choice to receive a physical device that you can use for two factor authentication when you send controlled substance prescriptions to pharmacies. This should arrive in 5-7 business days with instructions. 

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Invite a Reference

6. Next, enter your reference's contact information who will typically be your practice administrator.

The reference will need to verify your identity as a prescriber who is authorized to prescribe controlled substances before you are able to electronically prescribe controlled substances. 

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Verify Your Prescriber Identity via ID.me 

Note: Steps 7-10 are completed by ID.me, indicated by the words ID.me across the top of your screen. Contact ID.me Support if you have issues on a screen with ID.me across the top. 

7. Next, the iPrescribe app will open your browser for you to sign into ID.me. Remember that you used ID.me when you went through identity proofing in Step 1: Register for iPrescribe 

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8. When prompted, open your ID.me Authenticator app and enter the code in the ID.me screen that you have open. 

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9. Verify your NPI number, DEA number, and the state associated with your DEA number. 

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10. Allow ID.me to verify your identity as a prescriber. 

Get a Mailed Verification Code at Your DEA-listed Business Address  

11. Next, you will order a mailer (letter) with a verification code that you will need to enter into the app to complete your activation for prescribing of controlled substances. 

iPrescribe will prompt you to confirm your primary business address listed with DEA.

If it is not current, you will need to update your profile with the DEA so that the mailer (letter) goes to a valid business address where you can retrieve mail. 

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12. Wait you will receive a mailer (5-10 business days) at your business address. This mailer is a letter that contains a 7-digit code that you will need to complete EPCS activation.

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Validate Mailed Verification Code, Password, & ID.me Authenticator App Code 

13. Once you receive your mailer (letter) at your DEA-listed business mailing address, log in to iPrescribe, tap the menu button in the top left corner, and select EPCS Activation.

Scan the QR code or enter the 7-digit code into iPrescribe:

  • To scan the QR code, tap the Scan QR code button, give iPrescribe access to your camera, then align the view of the camera with the QR code on the mailer.
  • To enter the code, select the Enter 7-digit code button.

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14. Next, enter your login password and a 6-digit one-time-pin from your ID.me Authenticator app. 

Note: The 6-digit security code times out after 30 seconds, so go back to the ID.me Authenticator app and get a new one if you get an error message. 

15. Tap Activate to complete the process to set up prescribing of controlled substances. 

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You are now ready to prescribe! 

Next Steps 

Once you finish step 15 and you receive the physical device you ordered in step 5 of this article, we highly recommend going to Step 6: Add Controlled Substance Tokens

Completing Step 6: Add Controlled Substance Tokens will benefit you in two ways: 

  • Compliance with DEA regulations. The DEA requires the device that generates your one-time-pin for two-factor authentication be on a different device than the device you use to prescribe. 
  • Having a back up two-factor authentication device. If you lose access to your ID.me Authenticator app, existing phone, or get a new phone, having other authenticators associated to your account will help you avoid losing access to electronic prescribing of controlled substances in iPrescribe. 
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