ANALYSIS OF COMPLETENESS AND LEGIBILITY OF PRESCRIPTION ORDERS AND PRESCRIPTION PATTERN AT A TERTIARY CARE HOSPITAL
Sandeep Vihan, Prashant Mishra* and Shashikant Bhargava
Introduction: Prescription errors are currently a worldwide public health issue and are the commonest form of avoidable medication errors. The purpose of study was to screen drug prescriptions dispensed in the out-patient department of a tertiary care hospital for its pattern and completeness of information. Materials and Methods: A retrospective cross-sectional study was conducted including 400 prescriptions of out-patient department. All prescriptions were evaluated for presence of (a) Prescriber information (hospital details, department, name, designation and signature of physician) (b) Patient information: Name, age, sex, weight, address, and date of issue (c) Details of each medication prescribed: Strength, frequency, route, dosage form, quantity to be dispensed, and instructions for use. Subjective assessment of legibility of handwriting was done. Results: Hospital identification details were present on all prescriptions. Prescriber details like name, designation, and signature were present in 46.25%, 21.75%, and 73.25%, respectively. The patient’s name, age, and gender were on 94.75%, 77.25% and 69.50%, respectively. Weight was mentioned on 10% and address on none. Details of medication like strength of medication and the frequency of administration were included in 70.33% and 93.77%, respectively. Route and dosage form were on 26.92 and 77.93%, respectively. 88.09% had quantity to be dispensed and 17.76% had instructions for use mentioned. Conclusions: The results demonstrate that prescription error occur frequently and may lead to medication error. There is a need to critically address the legibility and correctness of prescription through sensitization and emphasis during undergraduate and postgraduate teaching to minimize the occurrence of medication errors.
Keywords: Prescription analysis, medication errors, prescription pattern, tertiary care.
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