Drug Prescription Habits in Public and Private Health Facilities in 2 Provinces in South Africa
(2010; 5 pages)


The aim of this study was to explore drug prescription habits using WHO standard indicators in 15 public hospitals and 36 private surgeries in 2 provinces in South Africa. A high mean number of drugs were prescribed per patient (3.2 versus 2.8) in public hospitals and by general practitioners (GPs) respectively and generic prescribing rates were low (45.2% versus 24.5%). The rates of prescribing in public hospitals and by GPs were 8.3% versus 23.3% for injections, 68.1% versus 31.9% for antibiotics and 92.6% versus 68.5% for drugs from the essential drugs list. Drug prescribing in both sectors needs to be regulated, especially the use of antibiotics, essential drugs and generic prescribing.

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