Tropical Journal of Pharmaceutical Research
Pharmacotherapy Group, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria
Vol. 8, No. 6, 2009, pp. 485-489
Bioline Code: pr09062
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge
Tropical Journal of Pharmaceutical Research, Vol. 8, No. 6, 2009, pp. 485-489
© Copyright © Pharmacotherapy Group, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Benin, Benin City, 300001 Nigeria.
A Comparison of Two Instruments for the Assessment of Legibility of Prescriptions in a Developing Country|
Akoria, Obehi A. & Isah, Ambrose O.
To compare the utility of a rating and visual analogue scale for the assessment of legibility in
A sample of fifty randomly selected prescriptions from a tertiary hospital in Benin City, Nigeria
was assessed by five independent assessors - three doctors and two pharmacists using a rating scale
and a 100 mm visual analogue scale. Rating scores were allocated as: 0 - completely illegible; 1 -
barely legible; 2 - moderately legible; 3 - clearly legible, and 4 - print. Visual analogue scores were
measured in millimetres.
Rating and visual analogue scores were skewed. The median rating score by doctors and
pharmacists were 2.0 and 3.0, respectively. Median visual analogue scores were 59.5, 67.0, 55.0, 51.5
and 46.0 mm, respectively. Inter-quartile ranges (rating scores) were 2.0 – 3.0 for both doctors and
pharmacists except for one pharmacist whose inter-quartile range was 1.0 – 2.3; inter-quartile ranges
(visual analogue scores) were 49.3 – 63.0, 59.8 – 71.0, 31.0 – 65.5, 40.8 – 62.0, 43.0 – 55.5 mm, for
the five independent assessors. The pharmacists’ scores using either scale were significantly positively
correlated (rs = 0.900; 2-tailed p = 0.05); one doctor’s scores were negatively correlated (rs = -0.308).
The findings support the utility of both instruments in the assessment of handwriting but
suggest that there may be important differences between doctors and pharmacists using either method.
Handwriting; Prescriptions; Legibility; Rating Scale; Visual Analogue Scale; Nigeria.
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