Background: The observance of standard prescription principles by physicians increases the likelihood of proper treatment, its effectiveness and patients’ recovery. The present study aims to explore the level of physicians’ observance of prescription standards while visiting outpatients referring to teaching hospitals in Ahvaz.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted on 550 prescriptions written for outpatients referring to (Ahvaz University of Medical Sciences) affiliated hospitals in 2015. In each prescription, issues related to legibility, medication form and order and identity information were extracted and recorded on a checklist prepared based on the World Health Organization guidelines. Each prescription was scored with a score range from 0 to 21 and then analyzed using descriptive statistics.
Results: The average number of items per prescription was 3.48; 1396 drugs (72.78%) were written legibly; 1032 drugs (58.81%) were prescribed incorrect forms; 1281 drugs (66.07%) were prescribed in correct order; doctor’s identity was written in 98.08% of the examined prescriptions; patient’s identity was written in 80.36% of the prescriptions; and 1428 drugs were prescribed consistent with the standards of prescription.
Conclusions: Study results revealed that most of the examined doctors prescribed medications consistent with the standards of prescription; however, the two dimensions of medication form and order of use were not adequately noticed by doctors. Use of electronic prescriptions can improve the communication of prescriptions in teaching hospitals.
Medications, Outpatients, Prescriptions