Background: Emergency medicine department of a tertiary care hospital is one of the busiest department and most challenging one for the attending physician. Patients here are in critical condition and treating doctors have to take fast decisions and actions so there are always chances of error in prescribing drugs. Therefore this study was planned with an intention to analyse drug utilization in patients admitted in emergency medicine department using WHO core prescribing indicators.
Methods: A prospective observational study on drugs prescribed in emergency medicine department in a tertiary care hospital was conducted for a period of three months. Data was extracted from 450 patients’ case records in a preformed performa after taking approval from institutional ethics committee. Data was analysed by using Microsoft excel. 2010.
Results: 1080 drugs were prescribed in the 450 prescriptions analysed, average being 2.40 drugs per prescription. Analgesics, proton pump inhibitors and antibiotics were the highly prescribed drugs and commonest routes of administration used were intravenous and intramuscular. Approximately 93% drugs belonged to either or both the WHO and National essential drug lists.
Conclusions: The results of the study disclosed both rational and irrational drug utilization. No polypharmacy was observed but 80% drugs were prescribed by brand name. Utilization of drugs belonging to essential drug lists indicates judicious use of drugs by our clinicians. Smaller sample size and lack of estimation of cost of treatment are the limitations of this study. Hence more data must be generated for accurate analysis.
Drug, Emergency medicine, Prescription, Polypharmacy, Routes of administration rationality