Current Medical Issues

: 2018  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 68-

Generic drug prescription: What next?

Thorakkal Shamim 
 Department of Dentistry, Government Taluk Head Quarters Hospital, Malappuram, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Thorakkal Shamim
Department of Dentistry, “Shangrila,” Parappanangadi, Malappuram - 676 303, Kerala

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Shamim T. Generic drug prescription: What next?.Curr Med Issues 2018;16:68-68

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Shamim T. Generic drug prescription: What next?. Curr Med Issues [serial online] 2018 [cited 2022 Dec 6 ];16:68-68
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Generic drug prescription practice is imposed on doctors in India by the government under the auspices of the Medical Council of India (MCI). Even though there are studies about the experience and attitude of patients who were consuming generic drugs, studies regarding generic drug prescription practice among doctors in India are lacking.[1] Prescription refers to written instructions given to a patient regarding medications, and prescription writing is an important task performed by a doctor during patient management.[2] Lack of attention during prescription writing can lead to prescription errors which in turn can adversely affect patients' well-being.[2] There were widespread errors in prescription writing by the doctors in India, as evident in the literature.[2],[3] In India, in order to maintain a uniform, standard, and clear prescription for better safety of patients, the MCI has come out with a new prescription format forwarded to all the State Medical Councils in India.[4] According to the new prescription format, doctors need to prescribe drugs with generic names in legible and capital letters.[4] This present prescription format of the Government of India will make the medicines cheaper and affordable for the patients. In order to ensure the quality assurance of drugs, prescriber can also name a few of the commercial names as an adjunct to the main prescription. A monitoring cell formed by the superintendent or the principal will monitor the rational prescribing practices of doctors in government hospitals and medical colleges, respectively.

It is ironical to say that generic drug prescription is imposed on doctors without conducting any survey among doctors regarding the practicality of the prescription format, and the decision of the Indian government is a hastily one regarding the prescription practice. Medical undergraduates under the Indian Medical Association and medical postgraduates under postgraduate specialties under specific associations (for example, Indian Association of Dermatologists, Venereologists and Leprologists, Association of Physicians of India, and the Association of Surgeons of India) should conduct survey regarding the practicality of generic drug prescription practice. All cumulative survey results from different associations should be submitted to the MCI and a monitoring body constituted by the MCI should study the survey results and based on that, prescription practice may be revised with amendments.

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1Das M, Choudhury S, Maity S, Hazra A, Pradhan T, Pal A, et al. Generic versus branded medicines: An observational study among patients with chronic diseases attending a public hospital outpatient department. J Nat Sci Biol Med 2017;8:26-31.
2Dyasanoor S, Urooge A. Insight into quality of prescription writing – An institutional study. J Clin Diagn Res 2016;10:ZC61-4.
3Phalke VD, Phalke DB, Syed MM, Mishra A, Sikchi S, Kalakoti P, et al. Prescription writing practices in a rural tertiary care hospital in Western Maharashtra, India. Australas Med J 2011;4:4-8.
4Medical Council of India. Model Prescription Format. January, 30, 2015. Available from: [Last accessed on 2018 Jan 23].