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Assessment of prescribing pattern of drugs and completeness of prescriptions as per the World Health Organization prescribing indicators in various Indian tertiary care centers: A multicentric study by Rational Use of Medicines Centers-Indian Council of Medical Research network under National Virtual Centre Clinical Pharmacology activity

  • Joshi, R
  • Medhi, B
  • Prakash, A
  • Chandy, S
  • Ranjalkar, J
  • Bright, HR
  • Basker, J
  • Govindraj, L
  • Chugh, PK
  • Tripathi, CD
  • Badyal, DK
  • Balakrishnan, S
  • Jhaj, R
  • Shukla, AK
  • Atal, S
  • Najmi, A
  • Banerjee, A
  • Kamat, S
  • Tripathi, RK
  • Shetty, YC
  • And 33 more
Published Article
Indian Journal of Pharmacology
Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Publication Date
Dec 13, 2022
DOI: 10.4103/ijp.ijp_976_21
PMID: 36537400
PMCID: PMC9846909
PubMed Central
  • Research Article


OBJECTIVE: The rational use of medicines as per the World Health Organization (WHO) should be practiced globally. However, data regarding the completeness of the prescriptions and their rational use is lacking from developing countries like India. Thus, the aim of this study was to assess the prescribing patterns of drugs and completeness of prescriptions as per WHO core drug use and complementary indicators to provide real-life examples for the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) online prescribing skill course for medical graduates. METHODS: Prescriptions of the patients, fulfilling inclusion criteria, attending Outpatient Departments of various specialties of tertiary care hospitals, were collected by thirteen ICMR Rational use of medicines centers located in tertiary care hospitals, throughout India. Prescriptions were evaluated for rational use of medicines according to the WHO guidelines and for appropriateness as per standard treatment guidelines using a common protocol approved by local Ethics committees. RESULTS: Among 4838 prescriptions, an average of about three drugs (3.34) was prescribed to the patients per prescription. Polypharmacy was noted in 83.05% of prescriptions. Generic drugs were prescribed in 47.58% of the prescriptions. Further, antimicrobials were prescribed in 17.63% of the prescriptions and only 4.98% of prescriptions were with injectables. During the prescription evaluation, 38.65% of the prescriptions were incomplete due to multiple omissions such as dose, duration, and formulation. CONCLUSION: Most of the parameters in the present study were out of the range of WHO-recommended prescribing indicators. Therefore, effective intervention program, like training, for the promotion of rational drug use practice was recommended to improve the prescribing pattern of drugs and the quality of prescriptions all over the country.

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