Rational Prescribing

Decision making about medication prescribing can be a complex process. Multiple factors must be considered to choose the best medication for each patient. Physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and any other member of the medical team with prescribing authority must thoughtfully consider the choice of medication, length of therapy, effective and safe dosing, and potential risk of drug interactions. This multistep process is referred to as rational prescribing.

The concept of rational prescribing was introduced by the World Health Organization (WHO) in the 1970s to provide guidance to the international health care community. This global initiative is aimed at improving the allocation of medical resources to most appropriate use. The fundamentals of rational prescribing are centered on maximizing clinical effectiveness, minimizing risk of harm to the ...

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