Variability in the measurement of the pharmaceutical prescription quality by autonomous communities

  • Caldentey C
  • Verdú E
  • Aniés M
  • et al.
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AIM: To examine how the different Spanish health regions are evaluating pharmaceutical prescription quality and the type of prescribing indicators used. DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. SETTING: The 17 Spanish Autonomous Communities during the period from January to December 2007. MEASUREMENTS: Definition and type of prescribing indicators, measurement units. RESULTS: We obtained information from 16 of the 17 CCAA through their health services. All health services had developed quality indicators of drug prescription. The number of indicators varied from 3 to 22 between regions. Most of the regions are using indicators based on adequate selection of drugs. Nine of the 16 CCAA are also including prevalence indicators and only the Basque Country and Cantabria are using indicators based on the quality of the therapeutic process. Nine CCAA use the number of packs as measurement unit and the other seven CCAA measure prescriptions in defined daily doses (ddd). The indicators most frequently used are: percentage of new drugs in 15 CCAA (93%), omeprazole in total IBP drugs in 13 (81.2%), percentage of generic drugs in 11 (68.7%) and selection of NSAID in 10 (62%). CONCLUSION: Each regional health service has developed its own set of drug prescription quality indicators. Consequently, there is great variability between regions in the assessment of the quality of drug prescription. Common indicators are needed in order to establish a benchmarking process between regional health services.

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Caldentey, C. V., Verdú, E. S., Aniés, M. P. A., Rodríguez, M. Á. H., Larrea, V. P., Sánchez, R. O., & Vicente, V. B. (2010). Variability in the measurement of the pharmaceutical prescription quality by autonomous communities. Atencion Primaria, 42(7), 380–387.

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