A new software based program has recently been created for new graduate doctors to ensure they prescribe safely from day one on the wards.
The SCRIPT (Standard Computerised Revalidation Instrument for Prescribing and Therapeutics) project has brought together a team of experts from Aston University (UK) and Birmingham and Warwick Medical Schools (UK) to create this innovative, e-learning toolkit.
Doctors who have recently graduated from medical school have to prescribe safely from day one on the wards. Their task is made harder by the many new drugs that have been introduced, as well as the rapid throughput of patients who are often sicker and older and who are more likely to suffer adverse drug reactions (drug side effects).
Sub-optimal prescribing among new doctors in their Foundation Year 1 (FY1) stage is common, and can result in the underuse of effective medicines, adverse drug reactions and medication errors.
Up to a quarter of litigation claims in the NHS stem from medication errors (Source: An Organisation of Memory, 2000, London: The Stationery Office),therefore emphasis has now been placed towards ensuring that patients in hospitals have safe care by improving the knowledge and skills required for safe prescribing in FY1 doctors.
“Medical schools educate on the theoretical side of medicine, but actual prescribing in practice is very difficult’,” says Dr Philip Thomas, a Junior Doctor in the West Midlands.
The SCRIPT (Standard Computerised Revalidation Instrument for Prescribing and Therapeutics) project which was funded by the West Midlands Strategic Health Authority (SHA) has brought together a team of experts from Aston University (UK) and Birmingham and Warwick Medical Schools (UK) to create the innovative, e-learning toolkit in response to the challenges of safe prescribing.