Capturing data on medicines usage: the potential of community pharmacy databases
Authors: Ryan, K., Norris, P. and Becket, G.
Journal: New Zealand Medical Journal
Aims The initial aim of the research projects was to examine the geographic distribution, patronage patterns, and loyalty of prescription clients around individual community pharmacies. A second aim was to explore the geographical and socioeconomic variation in the use of prescription medicines and prescribing trends both between and within therapeutic classes.
Methods Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology (including the tabulating, geocoding, and mapping functions) was used to analyse the information that is held in community pharmacy databases.
Results These studies demonstrated the use of this technology to show variation in local use of prescription medicines, at both an individual level and a population level, through the analysis of data already held in community pharmacy databases. Conclusion The use of GIS technology and pre-existing community pharmacy databases enables improved data capture on the prescription—and medication-related behaviour of health-service consumers.
Preferred by: Kath Ryan