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Need for standard guidelines on treatment of certain illnesses

New Delhi: Dr Kameshwar Prasad, head of the clinical epidemiology unit at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), has emphasised the need for preparing standard guidelines on treatment of certain illnesses so as to prevent doctors from prescribing unnecessary and outdated drugs, diagnostic tests and surgical procedures to their patients.

“On many occasions, doctors ask for tests that are unnecessary. Similarly, there are drugs that have become outdated or whose efficacy isn’t proven. But doctors keep prescribing them. Unless there are standard guidelines on treatment of certain illnesses, such misuse will keep happening,” said Dr Prasad.

Doctors at AIIMS who recently screened prescriptions of 250 brain stroke patients referred from different hospitals found more than 48 per cent of them were prescribed a particular drug, which is not approved.

According to Dr Prasad, “Every hospital should conduct an audit of various procedures carried out, say in a month. This would give us much-needed data about how prevalent each procedure is, and whether it is being misused.” [Source: ToI]

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