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Research Article

Comparison of prescription costs within a group practice.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1984; 289 doi: (Published 03 November 1984) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1984;289:1196
  1. L Baumgard,
  2. P Frank,
  3. J A Rees,
  4. K Shearer


    Records of prescriptions that originated from one group practice and were dispensed at one pharmacy were maintained for one year. The information recorded included the age and sex of the patients, the name of the prescribing doctor, and the drug(s) prescribed and their cost. Analysis of the records showed considerable differences in average prescription costs among doctors. For all the major therapeutic groups, repeat prescriptions were more expensive than new prescriptions, children had cheaper prescription costs than adults, and prescriptions for women were cheaper than those for men. Within an age-sex group or a therapeutic group, however, prescription costs were similar for each doctor. These results indicate that the differences in overall prescribing costs among doctors were not due to different management of the same disorders, but were due to different types of patients being seen.