The Effect of Beers Criteria-Based Training in General Practitioners on Prescribing Potentially Inappropriate Medications in Elderly Patients
Background: Pharmacotherapy in elderly patients has become a major concern due to their physiological changes, pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics variations, poly-pharmacy, etc. Objective: According to the global population ageing, we aim to evaluate the effect of “Beers Criteria” education on prescribing medications for elderly patients by GPs.
Method: 30 General practitioners (GPs) with the highest number of prescriptions were included in this pilot study and their prescriptions for geriatric patients selected randomly during three months. Then the physicians trained on appropriate prescription by prepared pamphlets and booklets which were equipped based on Beers 2015 explicit criteria. In order to evaluate the effect of education, appropriateness of prescriptions was analyzed before and after training GPs.
Results: Among 15,447 prescriptions in the first step, 1281 prescriptions related to geriatrics and the prevalence of inappropriate drug prescription was 37.3%. The most inappropriate medications were Bisacodyl, Alprazolam and Hyoscyamine. While, in the next step 1055 of 15,154 prescriptions were related to elderly people and inappropriate drug prescription was 23.6% of total prescriptions. The most common inappropriate medications include Alprazolam, Amitriptyline and Hyoscyamine.
Conclusion: According to the results, prevalence of prescribing potentially inappropriate medications for elderly patients is high among GPs and educating “Beers Criteria” significantly reduces prescription of inappropriate medications.
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