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Independents' Day

Attack on GP scripts is 'blatantly wrong'

It is 'blatantly wrong' to claim GPs make serious errors in 11 per cent of prescriptions, says the GP academic whose research was cited by Professor Sir Michael Rawlins to justify his controversial attack on GP prescribing competence.

Most GP prescribing mistakes are not 'significant', according to Dr Aneez Esmail.

Dr Esmail, senior lecturer in general practice at the University of Manchester, said his study did identify errors in more than one in 10 prescriptions ­ but this included insignificant problems like simple spelling mistakes.

Sir Michael, chair of the National Institute for Clinical Excellence, cited the research to back his suggestion that pharmacists should be sent into every practice to cut hospital admissions caused by prescribing mistakes.

Dr Esmail said having pharmacist advice available was 'very useful' for GPs, but the idea of putting a pharmacist in every practice was 'ridiculous'.

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