The MSTG is being used to compare actual prescribing practices with recommended treatment regimes, together with management tools which have been developed for the purpose and which are currently being pilot-tested for possible national introduction. These include:
• Out-patient registers: this records details of patients, diagnoses and treatments prescribed. Evaluation of the degree of compliance of prescribers with recommended treatments is made by comparison with MSTG guidelines. It is expected that such registers would be routinely used and would provide detailed information on patient attendances, treatment practices and morbidity patterns.
• Duplicate prescription pads: these are an alternative form of collecting the same types of information, in which carbon copies of each prescription are made and retained for subsequent analysis. These would not be used routinely, but would be used when required to identify problem areas in prescribing. District level or even health unit specific training interventions would then be prioritised and implemented to focus on the specific problems exposed.