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Gleeson M, Coyle P, Clarke Moloney M, Walsh SR, Grace PA.
An audit of generic prescribing in a general surgical department.
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                           BACKGROUND: The Health Service Executive introduced a generic prescription policy to reduce costs. Despite this, generic prescription rates remain low.AIM: To audit in-patient prescription practice in a single surgical department and identify potential savings which could be realised by adherence to the generic prescribing policy.METHODS: Surgical in-patient charts were obtained at the point of discharge and their drug prescription information was recorded.RESULTS: 51 % of prescriptions involved a trade-name prescription where an appropriate generic equivalent existed. The cost implications for hospital and community patients were found to be greatly affected by substitution policies that exist at hospital pharmacy level.CONCLUSION: There is a need to promote greater adherence to generic prescribing amongst hospital doctors in line with international best practice. It can have a positive impact in terms of safe prescribing and can have cost implications at both hospital and community level.
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