Objective: Due concern growing regarding incomplete or illegible prescriptions, the present survey was undertaken to assess the prescription writing skills of doctors practicing in Dhule city. Material and methods: 286 prescriptions dispensed by various doctors were collected for 5 consecutive days from 5 randomly selected pharmacy shops in Dhule city, Maharashtra state, India. The prescriptions were photocopied and returned to the patients. Collected prescriptions were assessed for patient’s information, doctor’s information and their legibility using predefined criteria by a calibrated examiner. The collected data was analyzed and presented as percentage and frequencies. Results: All the collected prescriptions were lacking one or more aspects of patient’s as well as doctor’s details. About 23.4% prescriptions had poor legibility and 21.3% prescriptions lacked details about more than one drug. Conclusion: The quality and nature of prescriptions written in Dhule city is substandard and it requires use of a standardized prescription format to be used. Also regarding legibility, computerization can be the answer to the problem.
Key words: Medication error, Drug prescription, Prescription error, Writing.