Inappropriate and unnecessary prescribing in general practice represents a potential safety hazard for patients and wastes NHS resources. Tackling these issues in medicine management will need to address what roles should be played by the new breed of primary care prescribers, including nurses, pharmacies and independent prescribers.
Related document: Quality of GP prescribing
Online distribution of this dimension of the GP Inquiry has been generously sponsored by First DataBank Europe.
What did we explore?
To inform its work, the Inquiry panel commissioned a research project to examine what good-quality prescribing looks like in terms of patient care and cost effectiveness, and how it can best be measured. Quality of GP prescribing what is known about the current quality of prescribing in general practice, including how quality varies from practice to practice. The paper's authors are Martin Duerden, GP and Assistant Medical Director (primary care); David Millson, RCGP Clinical Champion for prescribing; Tony Avery, Professor of Primary Health Care, University of Nottingham; and Sharon Smart, Director of Clinical Knowledge, Sowerby Centre for Health Informatics at Newcastle.
What have we learnt about prescribing?
In March 2010 the Inquiry held a seminar, kindly sponsored by First DataBank Europe, on prescribing with participants including GPs, practice nurses, NHS executives, health academics and patient representatives.
Key issues raised in discussion include:
- How can better use be made of prescribing data and IT to improve the quality and safety of prescribing?
- What are the appropriate roles for nurse, independent and other non-GP prescribers in primary care?
- To what extent should general practice take patient views on board and ensure that their choices have been explored at the time of prescribing?
What's your view?
During the inquiry, we asked for your opinions on this care dimension. You can read the comments submitted below.