NCPDP Foundation Awards $100,000 to Support Real-Time Prescription Benefit (RTPB) Standard Projects at DrFirst and Johns Hopkins Medicine

NCPDP’s Real-Time Prescription Benefit (RTPB) Standard’s Transparency of Prescription Drug Coverage and Out-of-Pocket Costs To Speed Time to Therapy and Improve Adherence

The NCPDP Foundation Board of Trustees, who govern the 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization that is affiliated with NCPDP, has approved $100,000 in funding to support two research projects piloting the Beta version of NCPDP’s Real-Time Prescription Benefit (RTPB) Standard. The pilots can result in identifying potential enhancements to the Standard, which is highly anticipated by the healthcare industry and will be finalized by August 2020.

A $50,000 grant is awarded to DrFirst for a pilot in partnership with RxSense, and another $50,000 grant is awarded to Johns Hopkins Medicine for a study in partnership with Surescripts.

NCPDP’s RTPB Standard provides a standardized format for the prescriber, pharmacy and pharmacy claims processor to exchange real-time information about a patient’s drug benefit coverage and out-of-pocket cost prior to prescribing and dispensing. The ability to instantly access this data at the point of prescribing provides unprecedented transparency which can increase speed to therapy and can have a positive impact on medication adherence and health outcomes.

The DrFirst project will evaluate the effectiveness of the NCPDP RTPB Standard by testing and validating the accuracy and timeliness of beneficiary information exchanged between the prescriber, pharmacy, and pharmacy claims processor at the point of care. Real-time information about an individual’s prescription coverage can help clinicians discuss options with patients while they are together to improve medication adherence and reduce prescription abandonment at the pharmacy.

The Johns Hopkins Medicine research team, led by Ashwini Davison MD, Jessica Merrey PharmD, and Danny Lee, MD will be characterizing the real-world use of a RTPB tool and evaluating the impact of NCPDP’s RTPB Standard on key stakeholders. They hope to provide evidence that RTPB tools have a positive effect on patients and reduce the burden on prescribers, payers, and pharmacies when new medications are prescribed.

The RTPB Standard was developed using NCPDP’s multi-stakeholder, consensus-building process and is designed to conform to providers’ workflows.

“We are committed to finalizing the Real-Time Prescription Benefit Standard in preparation for industry adoption and appreciate the support of the Foundation and the grantees whose research can help fortify the standard,” said Lee Ann Stember, President & CEO of NCPDP.


NCPDP Foundation Chair, Mindy D. Smith, BSPharm, R.Ph., MHA, explained, “The NCPDP Foundation’s funding of research that can identify potential enhancements to the Real-Time Prescription Benefit Standard contributes to making healthcare delivery better, safer and cost-effective for the patient. The Standard also benefits providers who can have better informed conversations with patients to select the best medication based on the patient’s individualized needs.”

About NCPDP Foundation 
The NCPDP Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona and is affiliated with the National Council for Prescription Drug Programs (NCPDP). The NCPDP Foundation was established in December 2012 to support research, education and charitable involvement within the healthcare industry. For more information, visit

NCPDP Foundation