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A study of prescription auditing in rural health care setting of north India

Shahid Hussain, Zahida Parveen, Seema Gupta, Dinesh Kumar, Rohini Gupta, Shivani Thakur.

Abstract
Background: Prescription audit is a quality improvement process that seeks to improve patient care. It supports health professionals in making sure their patients receive the best possible care. In this background, this study was conducted in rural health-care settings in North India.

Objective: To assess prescription pattern in primary and secondary health-care facilities of North India.

Materials and Methods: This observation study was undertaken for a period of 1 year and data were collected from 500 prescriptions collected from various outpatient departments of primary and secondary health-care facilities.

Result: Most common diagnosis was diseases of respiratory system (28.3%). Among therapeutic classification, drugs most commonly used were antimicrobials (20.87%) and most common antimicrobial was penicillin at the rate of 31.7%. Among penicillin combination of amoxycillin and clavulanic acid was most commonly prescribed. A total of 96.3% encounters were having single antimicrobials. Of all, 61.8% prescriptions contained fixed-dose combinations in which combination of expectorants and cough suppressants was most common.

Conclusion: Many of the prescribing trends from this study are a cause of concern and need attention. The value of such audits in generating and testing hypothesis on inappropriate prescribing will definitely create an intervention to improve prescribing habits and ultimately patient care will be improved.

Key words: medical audit, demography, morbidity, therapeutic class, fixed-dose combination


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