Background and importance Among the skills of the NHS pharmacist, monitoring of medical prescriptions in terms of correctness and appropriateness is essential. Concerning home care services in Vercelli, family doctors visit patients at home once a week and require drugs and medications directly from the hospital pharmacy to guarantee a fast supply, more control and management of correctness and appropriateness.
Aim and objectives Referring to national regulations, the hospital pharmacy of Vercelli launched a programme of controls to ensure correct prescribing behaviour by family doctors for patients for the at home care service (ADI) to identify prescriptive anomalies and guarantee a correct and appropriate drug supply to patients.
Material and methods Pharmacists collected prescriptions drawn up by family doctors on a specific form and received between 1 July 2020 and 30 September 2020. Using a database, we registered and analysed the appropriateness of prescriptions in terms of posology, existence of any therapeutic plans for particular drugs, quantity required in each request to be coherent with the hospital protocol (maximum 30 days), presence of required drugs in the PTA (pharmaceutical formulary), and the patient’s and doctor’s individual data to be complete and readable.
Results For 623 prescriptions received, 58 (9.23%) resulted in at least one prescriptive anomaly: in 44 prescriptions the posology was not indicated, in 15 prescriptions the quantity of drug required exceeded 30 days of therapy, 8 prescriptions contained drugs not in the pharmaceutical hospital formulary and 6 prescriptions presented other types of anomalies (doctor/patient not identifiable, any indication of quantity required, unreadable drug, etc). During UCAD (District Activity Coordination Office) meetings with family doctors, pharmacists presented the results obtained, asking them to correct their prescribing behaviour. Doctors who reiterated their mistakes in different requests were contacted directly to discuss individual cases.
Conclusion and relevance While wanting to analyse the prescriptions in a similar period of time (next 3 months), the results obtained in the first 2 weeks of October (85 correct prescriptions out of 86 received) showed how the intervention of hospital pharmacists, in collaboration with the professionals involved in patient care, can lead to an improvement in prescribing behaviour, to protect the patient‘s health, the appropriateness of the use of drugs and the management of resources.
Conflict of interest No conflict of interest
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