How to Investigate Drug Use in Health Facilities
Selected Drug Use Indicators
Document produced by the WHO Action Programme on Essential Drugs
Technical Units
Order Number    19300049 Format    Package
Price    CHF    16.00 / US$    19.20 Developing countries:    CHF    11.20
English     1993        87   pages
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Summary
Sets out a newly developed, simple and reliable methodology for gathering essential data on drug use patterns and prescribing behaviour in health facilities. The methodology, which has been widely tested in a number of developing countries, centres on the use of twelve core indicators to gather pertinent data on the drug use situation. The manual also explains how these twelve indicators, which measure prescribing practices, the quality of patient care, and the availability of drugs, can be used as a simple tool for gathering objective, useful data quickly, easily, and in a reproducible manner.
This standard set of drug-use indicators can be used to assess the problems of clinically or economically inappropriate drug use, to make comparisons between groups or to measure changes over time, as a supervisory tool to identify individual prescribers or health facilities with especially poor patterns of drug use, and to measure the effect of interventions. The techniques for using the indicators have been thoroughly tested, and can be implemented in a standard way by individuals without special training or access to many resources.
The manual has six sections. The first provides an overview of the indicators and explains how they can be applied to study drug use, to identify problems, and to prioritize and focus subsequent efforts to correct these problems. Section two defines and describes each of the twelve core indicators, and provides practical advice on methods of data collection and calculation, supported by practical examples. Basic principles of study design and sampling are explained in section three. The remaining sections provide guidance on study planning and field methods, the analysis and reporting of results, and suggested follow-up activities once the study has been completed.