Evaluation of prescription errors and polypharmacy practices in rural area at community pharmacy
Keywords:Prescription, Prescription parameters, Polypharmacy, Non-compliance, Prescription errors
Background: Prescription refers to a written request from physician to patient for compounding and dispensing of medicines. The prescription comprises detail information of patient, physician, and drugs, absence of these prescription parameters may harm the patient’s safety. Inappropriate practices like polypharmacy prescriptions must be avoided as this may lead to non-compliance.
Methods: A cross section observational study was conducted at a community pharmacy from September to November 2019. Permission was taken from the registered pharmacist. Prescriptions were collected from the subjects who visited the pharmacy in rural area. A checklist was prepared including all the parameters and the prescriptions were analyzed through Microsoft excel.
Results: Out of 2227 prescriptions collected, patient’s name, age and weight were not written in 10.57%, 78.41%, and 12.33% of prescriptions respectively. Physician’s name, designation and registration number were not mentioned in 18.50%, 21.14%, 29.51% prescriptions respectively. Date of issue was lacking in 12.33% prescriptions. It was found that 44.49% prescriptions were illegible. It was observed that 82.81% prescriptions possessed dosage form of drug and 32.15% dose in it. The study showed that 19.2% prescriptions were polypharmacy prescriptions.
Conclusions: Prescription is an authoritative document between doctor and pharmacist therefore it needs to be precise, fastidious, and scrupulous, monitoring to identify causes, analyze errors and blemishes in the prescription. One or other parameters were lacking in every prescription. ‘Educate to medicate’ this indicates that sound knowledge is requiring to prescribe therapeutically efficacious and accurate medicines in prescription.
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