Medical Journal of Zambia

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Medical Prescription Pitfalls of Uncomplicated Urinary Tract Infections in Government Healthcare Facilities in Zambia

C Besa, S Siziya


Objectives: The aim of this evaluation was to identify pitfalls in medical prescriptions of uncomplicated urinary tract infections in government healthcare facilities in Zambia.
Design: This was a cross sectional and government healthcare facilities were conveniently sampled.
Main outcome measures: Rate of compliance to Zambia national prescribing guidelines.
Results: A total of 42 (75.0%) out of 56 students participated in the survey of whom 66.7% were males. Findings in this study has demonstrated significant drug misuse and over-prescription as participants were healthy individuals. Only 75.6% of prescriptions indicated patient's name and very small proportions of prescriptions (11.5%) indicated patients' address. In addition, relatively small proportion of prescriptions (68.8%) had generic names and many prescriptions (58.1%) had large blank spaces left. Furthermore, relatively large proportion of prescriptions were not signed (10.7%) and not dated (12.0%). Almost half of the prescriptions (47.6%) did not show prescribers' names and only small proportions of prescriptions had precribers' identification number (24.0%) and address or department (21.5%) indicated. 
Conclusions: Overall, the evaluation has shown poor prescribing practices and not in compliance with national prescribing guidelines among prescribers in government healthcare facilities in Zambia.

Key words: Drug errors; urinary tract infection; adverse drug reactions; drug – drug interactions; Zambia

AJOL African Journals Online