ISSN 1308-8734 | E-ISSN 1308-8742
Original Article
Prescribing Practices of Physicians at Different Health Care Institutions
1 Health Policies Board, Ministry of Health, Ankara, Turkey  
2 Turkish Medicines and Medical Devices Agency, Department of Rational Drug Use, Drug Supply Management and Promotion, Ministry of Health, Ankara, Turkey  
3 Department of Pharmacology, Marmara University School of Medicine, Istanbul, Turkey  
4 General Directorate of Health Research, Ministry of Health, Ankara, Turkey  
Eurasian J Med 2013; 45: 92-98
DOI: 10.5152/eajm.2013.20
Key Words: Health care, institutions, medicine, physicians, rational prescribing
Abstract

Objective: Irrational pharmacotherapy is a widespread health care problem, and knowing the prescription practices of physicians at an institutional level can present solutions. This study aimed to investigate whether physicians’ prescribing patterns showed differences at the level of the health care institution. 

 

Materials and Methods: Photocopies of 3201 prescriptions written at primary health care centers (PHCs), public hospitals, private hospitals, and university hospitals (UHs) were collected from 10 provinces in Turkey. The prescriptions were evaluated according to prescribing indicators, and the details of drug utilization were compared for different health care institutions. 

 

Results: The average number of medicines per prescription was 2.83, and the highest average was noted in PHCs (2.96). The average cost per prescription was US $51.57, and the highest average cost was found in UHs (US $166.10). The most frequently prescribed drug group was different among health care institutions. With the exception of UHs, the “cold-cough medicines” were the most frequently prescribed medicines at all of the institutions. Thirty-nine percent of the prescriptions included antibiotics.

 

Conclusion: Despite the similarities between the distributions of diagnoses on prescriptions by health care institutions, the contents of the prescriptions showed differences. The high levels of prescriptions for “cold-cough medicines,” whose use is widely debated, and the widespread tendency of physicians to prescribe antibiotics suggest that there is a growing need for disseminating the principles of rational pharmacotherapy. Furthermore, institutional differences must be considered when conducting rational pharmacotherapy programs.

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