Quality of Pediatric Prescription Writing at Department of Pediatrics and Child Health, Tikur Anbessa Specialized Teaching Hospital, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Background: Drugs are important weapons in the fight against disease and play crucial role in saving life. Incorrect prescription of drugs is equally dangerous and could cause life threatening complications. Erroneous prescribing habits are not uncommon in clinical practice. Hence the objective of this study is to assess the nature of prescription deficiencies (omission and error) and documented corrective measures taken by the dispensing pharmacist.
Objective: to assess the quality of pediatric prescriptions written by doctors in Tikur Anbessa Specialized teaching Hospital, Department of Pediatrics and Child Health, Out-patient Department (OPD), follow up clinics and Emergency Unit.
Materials and Methods: This is a cross- sectional hospital based study done on all prescriptions written to non admitted patients below 14 yrs of age visiting pediatric OPD, emergency unit and follow up clinics of Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital. The study was conducted from January 2014 to October 2014 based on the national standard prescription format adopted by Food, Medicine and Health Care Administration and Authority (FMHACA).
Results: Total number of prescriptions studied was 246. With regard to patient identification, 78% of
prescriptions lack patient age, 80.5% sex and 86.2% patient weight. 50.8% of the prescriptions do not bear drug formulation and 19.9% lack drug generic name. 30% of the prescriptions were issued with erroneous dose. Prescribers name was not documented in 45.5% of the prescriptions and date of prescriptions issued was not written in 65% of the prescriptions. Documented corrective measure was not seen in any of the prescriptions issued.
Conclusion and recommendation: From this study, prescription quality is unsatisfactory. To improve prescription writing skills the Department of Pediatrics and Child health has to give great emphasis on
correct prescription writing. Frequent feedback should be given to incorrect prescribers to avoid or decrease prescription errors.