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HIV Med. 2012 Jul;13(6):367-71. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-1293.2011.00977.x. Epub 2012 Jan 18.

Antiretroviral therapy prescribing in hospitalized HIV clinic patients.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacy, Jersey City Medical Center, Jersey City, NJ 07302, USA.



Antiretroviral therapy (ART) medication prescribing errors in hospitalized patients still remain common. This study aimed to examine the initial prescribing of antiretroviral drug regimens for HIV clinic patients admitted to an urban academic teaching hospital.


A retrospective chart review of all patients with a discharge diagnosis of HIV or AIDS was performed. Only patients actively managed by the hospital out-patient HIV clinic at the time of discharge were included in the final analysis. We compared the ART initially prescribed during hospitalization with the clinic records. Medication errors were separated by type and the prescriber's area of specialty was noted.


From 1 January 2009 to 31 December 2009, 90 admissions in 62 patients were included in the final analysis. In 47 of those admissions, the patient had an initial regimen considered to be incorrectly prescribed; in 17 of these 47 admissions, the patient was not prescribed any ART, and in the remainder the errors were related to drug omissions, incorrect frequency/dose, and prescription of the wrong drug. The majority of admissions were by an internal medicine or non-infectious disease (ID) specialist. Average time to ART initiation was comparable among all prescribers. No statistically significant correlation was found between the number of admissions per patient or the prescriber's area of specialty and the percentage of incorrect regimens ordered.


Hospital HIV medication management still remains an area of focus because of the complexity of regimens, poor medication reconciliation and limited non-HIV/ID specialist knowledge.

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