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Am J Hosp Pharm. 1983 Nov;40(11):1945-51.

Effect of clinical pharmacy services on prescribing on an orthopedic unit.


Prescribing patterns of physicians on a university-hospital orthopedic unit before, during, and after a clinical pharmacist's intervention were monitored and compared with patterns on a similar unit without clinical pharmacy services at another university hospital. The experimental and control groups consisted of 10% random samples of all patients on the study wards. Mean drug cost, number of doses, and number of courses of therapy for all drugs and for antibiotics were calculated. The data collection period consisted of 9 months (phase 1) before, 12 months (phase 2) during, and 6 months (phase 3) after clinical pharmacy services. Prescribing of postoperative prophylactic antibiotics was evaluated for compliance with guidelines of the experimental hospital's pharmacy and therapeutics committee. In the experimental group there was a consistent reduction from phase 1 to phase 2 in overall and antibiotic drug costs, number of doses, and number of courses of therapy per patient-day, but the differences were not significant. Length of stay decreased from phase 1 to phase 2, but the patterns were not significant over time or between experimental and control groups. For the experimental group, there was a significant reduction during phase 2 in the number of hours of antibiotic prophylaxis after removal of surgical drains, but prescribers' overall compliance with guidelines for postoperative antibiotic prophylaxis did not change significantly over time. In a subgroup receiving antibiotics, drug costs per patient-day at the experimental site were reduced from phase 1 to phase 2 for all drugs and for antibiotics. Of 1196 consultations, 76% were unsolicited; 83% of antibiotic-related problems were identified by the pharmacist.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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