Intended for healthcare professionals

Research Article

Information systems for general practitioners for quality assessment: III. Suggested new prescribing profile.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985; 291 doi: (Published 07 December 1985) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985;291:1613
  1. R C Fraser,
  2. J T Gosling


    The information that is supplied to general practitioners by the Prescription Pricing Authority and family practitioner committees has severe limitations if used for self audit of prescribing. We studied the demand for and the extent to which general practitioners would collaborate in developing a system for providing more pertinent information about patterns of personal and practice prescribing. One hundred and eighty two doctors (36% of respondents to a questionnaire) who wished to learn more about their repeat prescribing were invited to help to generate this information and to create profiles of their personal prescribing rates based on a denominator of doctor-patient contacts. Nearly all of them translated intention into participation and also recruited 28 more doctors, since all partners in a practice had to take part. Overall, 202 doctors (40%) took part, 83% of whom participated in the combined study of repeat prescribing and rate of prescribing and 17% in the repeat prescribing exercise only. The examples of the new profiles that are provided show a more accurate representation of personal and practice prescribing patterns, differentiate between face to face contacts and repeat prescriptions, and are likely to stimulate improvements in personal or practice prescribing. We believe that this system should be offered to all practices in the United Kingdom.