Three Year Strategic Plan & Continuing Priorities

NCPDP’s Strategic Planning Committee (SPC) guides the development of NCPDP by executing on Board-directed strategic initiatives and metrics to identify new markets and services and help shape the future of the organization. Its committee members implement a plan of action to advance both the short-term and long-term initiatives and priorities that are established by the Board of Trustees. The SPC is comprised of voting and non-voting members including a mix of Board of Trustee (BOT) members and other NCPDP members.

In May 2020, the Board of Trustees approved NCPDP’s Three Year Strategic Plan. The plan provides clear direction for NCPDP over the next three years, as well as the flexibility to adjust our focus in a changing environment.

Take a look at a high-level overview of the Three Year Strategic Plan, followed by a more in-depth look at four strategic priorities that NCPDP continues to focus on in 2022.


NCPDP's Three Year Strategic Plan, and its continuing key priorities, below, support our purpose, vision and the important role of standards in patient safety.

Universal Patient Identifier

Lead an educational effort that focuses on the critical importance of patient identification and the challenges to patient safety and interoperability.

The Universal Patient Identifier (UPI), powered by Experian Health UIM and NCPDP Standards™, is a standards-based, vendor-neutral and provider-neutral solution for accurately managing patient matching and identification across the healthcare ecosystem. The UPI is a pass-through number that is not known to the patient or provider. The ability to achieve the patient safety benefits of the UPI relies on its propagation throughout the healthcare ecosystem using NCPDP’s Telecommunication Standard and SCRIPT Standard.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Addresses the business challenges of patient matching and identification. The solution enables organizations to improve the quality and integrity of its patient records, and supports interoperability across disparate healthcare entities.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Supports a more comprehensive, accurate view of the patient for better informed clinical decision making, reducing medical/medication errors, and improving care coordination, population health management, and prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMP).

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Protects against patient misidentification and associated errors, and ensures healthcare providers have accurate and actionable patient data, strengthening patient safety.

*Our joint offering with Experian Health leverages Experian’s expansive consumer demographic information and referential matching methodologies to identify record matches and duplicates in a patient roster file, and then assign a unique NCPDP Universal Patient Identifier (UPI) to each patient in the file.

Specialty Pharmacy Expansion

Expand member footprint among specialty pharmacy domain by engaging key influencers to promote NCPDP as the logical venue for the industry to engage and develop the next generation of interoperable solutions for care coordination.

The rapidly growing specialty pharmacy market is highly specialized and therefore unable to take full advantage of the efficiencies enabled by our existing standards. The potential to have an impact on specialty pharmacy is a natural fit with our purpose and vision, leveraging standards to streamline complex business needs and have an impact on improving health outcomes for patients receiving targeted, high-touch therapies. It also supports increased membership and participation by specialty pharmacy in our other standardization work.

Our February 2018 Specialty Pharmacy Stakeholder Action Group validated strong interest in standardization using NCPDP’s multi-stakeholder, consensus-building process. An outcome was a request to form a work group to bring greater focus and coordination to developing standards for the electronic exchange of data in specialty pharmacy. A follow-up Specialty Pharmacy SAG was held in May 2018 during work group meetings and NCPDP's 2018 Annual Conference. In June, the Standardization Committee and NCPDP Board of Trustees approved the formation of WG18 Specialty Pharmacy. The new work group will give the segment a home to prioritize and work on workflows and transactions that would benefit from standardization. This can, in turn, fortify our existing standards, which do not fully address the level of complexity for all stakeholders involved in specialty – including patients.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Provides a proven process and forum for addressing the needs of specialty pharmacy, with the potential to increase efficiencies, lower costs and help improve patient care.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Automating transactions based on provider workflows enables clinicians to focus on patient care services.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Patients with complex and/or chronic medical conditions can benefit from standardization efforts which may include faster access to specialty medications and better quality patient care.

Real-Time Prescription Benefit (RTPB) Standard

Increase industry awareness of NCPDP’s role in transforming healthcare and expand NCPDP’s ability to create solutions throughout the healthcare industry.

Access to real-time prescription benefit information has the potential to transform the patient experience and speed time to therapy by making patients’ formulary and benefit information available to providers at the point of prescribing. NCPDP’s Real-Time Prescription Benefit (RTPB) Standard can bring an unprecedented level of transparency and actionable clinical information to all healthcare providers.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Standardized transactions for RTPB support improved interoperability across the healthcare ecosystem and can accelerate time to therapy and improved health outcomes. This is important for patients and all stakeholders, particularly those with a focus on outcomes-driven measurement. The RTPB Standard also informs the prescriber of a prior-authorization requirement and supports CMS rule that mandates each Part D plan adopt one or more real-time benefit tools that are capable of integrating with at least one prescriber’s ePrescribing system or EHR, no later than Jan. 1, 2021.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Transforms the provider-patient relationship by putting real-time prescription benefit information in the hands of prescribers and pharmacists. Providers can have informed, productive conversations with patients on treatment regimens and alternatives to select the best medication based on the individual patient.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Transparency on out-of-pocket costs enables patients to have informed conversations with providers at the point of care about their health and treatment. Supports patient engagement, enables patients to be more proactive in their care and improves adherence. The ultimate goal is getting patients the medication they need, faster.

NCPDP Standards-based Facilitators Model for PDMP,
An Interoperable Framework for Patient Safety

Continue our campaign to gain industry and policy support for NCPDP’s Interoperable PDMP Solution; see it to implementation.

The NCPDP Standards-based Facilitators Model for PDMP, An Interoperable Framework for Patient Safety, is a standards-based model to prevent diversion, ensure appropriate access and protect patients. It fortifies gaps in current PDMPs, providing proactive, actionable data at the points of prescribing using NCPDP’s SCRIPT Standard, and dispensing, using our Telecommunication Standard, as well as clinical alerts which are provided by Private Sector Facilitators as detailed in our model.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Provides an onramp for state PDMPs to address gaps and provide real-time information at the point of care anywhere in the country. Reduces incidence of fraud. Reduces impact on the industry through the use of existing standards that are widely implemented and conform to provider workflows.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Utilizing existing industry standards reduces the burden on providers by incorporating complete, accurate and timely medication history information within pharmacy and prescriber workflows. Clinical alerts notify prescribers and pharmacies when data from the Private Sector Facilitator show a patient exhibits patterns indicative of opioid misuse or abuse.

Standards for Electronic Exchange

Ensures access for patients with valid medical needs. Assists in efforts to prevent people from unwittingly going down the path of addiction. Supports addiction treatment and recovery efforts for individuals with substance use disorders, by providing timely and accessible medication history information to practitioners.