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Drug Information Systems (DIS)

A drug information system is a tool that enables authorized health care providers to access, manage, share and safeguard patients' medication histories. A component of an electronic health record (EHR) system, a drug information system supports the storage and retrieval of patient prescription and medication information, and may provide application services supporting dispensing activities such as drug-usage evaluation.


Infoway pre-implementation DIS certification is relevant to health information technology solutions for drug information services. It is expected that implementers will provide drug information services to point-of-service systems by integrating a DIS component into their EHR system.

There is an important scope qualification to the DIS Pre-Implementation Certification. It does not contain criteria which would apply to a stand-alone, complete DIS application, because some application requirements are expected to be met by other parts of the EHR infostructure. An example of such an absent criterion would be the requirement to log all access to patient data.

The DIS pre-implementation certification allows for assessment of these component applications alone, or as application-based service offerings.

The drug information systems domain is made up of two certification classes:

  • Category I Drug Information System
    A Drug Information System that serves only as a medication information repository, and does not provide any clinical application functionality, such as Drug Usage Evaluation or interaction checking. A Category 1 Drug Information System also does not support storage and retrieval of allergies or adverse reactions.
  • Category II Drug Information System
    A Drug Information System that serves as a medication information repository, provides clinical application functionality, such as Drug Usage Evaluation or interaction checking, and supports storage and retrieval of allergies or adverse reactions.

Certification criteria

The pre-implementation assessment criteria include:

  • Generic Criteria, applying to all classes of health information technology application or service (for example, requirements having to do with privacy and security)
  • Interoperability Criteria, which specifically apply to a DIS.

These criteria use the phrase “personal information” to mean any personal information maintained by the application or service about the subjects of health care. Therefore even basic demographic information falls into the category of “personal information” and is therefore subject to the requirements of these criteria.

The framework for the assessment criteria is shown in the table below. It consists of two classes of criteria:

Solution – Refers to the aspects of privacy, security and interoperability that need to be assessed.

Management – Refers to how the organization providing the product manages solution accreditation.

Drug Information Systems Assessment Criteria
Solution Management

Privacy & Security

User identity management

Access control

Data integrity

Data availability



Limiting use, disclosure & retention


Data management





Allergies / Intolerances

Adverse reactions


Solution accreditation

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