Out-Patient Prescribing Practices at Mbagathi District Hospital-Nairobi County
Objective: To assess medicine use practices by using WHO prescribing and patient care indicators in Mbagathi Hospital outpatient department.
Design: A hospital based retrospective study.
Setting: Mbagathi District Hospital outpatient department between 1st January to 30th June 2012.
Main outcome measures: Measures used in this study included, total number of medicines in a prescription, proportion of medicines in the essential drug list, proportion in generic names, proportion with injectables and antibiotics and percentage actually dispensed.
Results: Total number of drugs prescribed was 1,506. On average, each patient was prescribed 3.85 types of drugs. A total of 835 drugs were prescribed by generic name, accounting for 25.6% of total number of drugs prescribed (1,506). Out of 391 sampled prescriptions, 266 had antibiotics accounting for (68.0%). A relatively small proportion of the prescriptions, 9.5% had an injection. A total of 1,087 drugs were prescribed according to the essential drugs list or formulary, accounting for 72.2% of total number of drugs prescribed (1,506). Only 55.2% of total medicines prescribed were actually dispensed and the rest were out of stock.
Conclusion: The prescribing practices in this study are not satisfactory, as suggested by polypharmacy, over prescription of antibiotics, prescribing by brand names and lack of awareness of essential drugs list.