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Prototype Prescribing Outlier Dashboard for Ambleside Health Centre

At OpenPrescribing we are piloting a number of data-driven approaches to identify unusual prescribing and collect feedback on this prescribing to inform development of new tools to support prescribers and organisations to audit and review prescribing. These pilot results are provided for the interest of advanced users, although we don't know how relevant they are in practice. There is substantial variation in prescribing behaviours, across various different areas of medicine. Some variation can be explained by demographic changes, or local policies or guidelines, but much of the remaining variation is less easy to explain.

The DataLab is keen to hear your feedback on the results. You can do this by completing the following survey or emailing us at [email protected]. Please DO NOT INCLUDE IDENTIFIABLE PATIENT information in your feedback. All feedback is helpful, you can send short or detailed feedback.

This report has been developed to automatically identify prescribing patterns at a chemical level which are furthest away from “typical prescribing” and can be classified as an “outlier”. We calculate the number of prescriptions for each chemical in the BNF coding system, the count of all prescriptions within that chemical's BNF subparagraph, for prescriptions dispensed between June 2021 and December 2021. We then calculate the ratio of these counts along with the mean and standard deviation of those ratios across all Practices. From this we can calculate the “z-score”, which is a measure of how many standard deviations a given Practice is from the population mean. We then rank your “z-scores” to find the top 10 results where prescribing is an outlier for prescribing higher than its peers and those where it is an outlier for prescribing lower than its peers.

For each outlier chemical, a kernel density estimation plot of all Practice's chemical:subparagraph ratios is provided, with this Practice's ratio overlaid in red.

It is important to remember that this information was generated automatically and it is therefore likely that some of the behaviour is warranted. This report seeks only to collect information about where this variation may be warranted and where it might not, to inform research on this topic. Our full analytical method code is openly available on GitHub here.

This is a new, experimental feature. We'd love to .

Prescribing where Ambleside Health Centre is higher than most

BNF Chemical Chemical Items BNF Subparagraph Subparagraph Items Ratio Mean std Z_Score Plots
Flunarizine dihydrochloride 9 Drugs used in nausea and vertigo 390 0.02 0.00 0.00 14.89
Bempedoic acid 12 Lipid-regulating drugs 6,916 0.00 0.00 0.00 7.79
Guaifenesin 2 Expectorant and demulcent cough preparations 2 1.00 0.03 0.14 6.78
Selenium sulfide 11 Shampoos and some other scalp preparations 41 0.27 0.03 0.04 5.34
Clindamycin phosphate 16 Vaginal and vulval infections 70 0.23 0.03 0.04 5.31
Azelastine hydrochloride 17 Other anti-inflammatory preparations 43 0.40 0.06 0.08 4.46
Risperidone 8 Antipsychotic depot injections 9 0.89 0.08 0.21 3.91
Bromocriptine 1 Bromocriptine and other dopaminergic drugs 1 1.00 0.10 0.23 3.87
Methenamine hippurate 94 Urinary-tract infections 361 0.26 0.04 0.06 3.79
Diclofenac potassium 8 Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs 609 0.01 0.00 0.00 3.73

Prescribing where Ambleside Health Centre is lower than most

BNF Chemical Chemical Items BNF Subparagraph Subparagraph Items Ratio Mean std Z_Score Plots
Simple 0 Expectorant and demulcent cough preparations 2 0.00 0.96 0.17 -5.69
    Nitrofurantoin 267 Urinary-tract infections 361 0.74 0.96 0.06 -3.79
    Cabergoline 0 Bromocriptine and other dopaminergic drugs 1 0.00 0.86 0.27 -3.17
      Amoxicillin 278 Broad-spectrum penicillins 413 0.67 0.85 0.07 -2.66
      Folic acid 598 Drugs used in megaloblastic anaemias 1,802 0.33 0.69 0.16 -2.30
      Famotidine 10 H2-Receptor antagonists 28 0.36 0.81 0.21 -2.16
      Clotrimazole 51 Vaginal and vulval infections 70 0.73 0.90 0.09 -2.03
      Sildenafil (Erectile Dysfunction) 158 Drugs for erectile dysfunction 271 0.58 0.77 0.09 -2.00
      Insulin aspart 75 Short-acting insulins 132 0.57 0.79 0.11 -1.97
      Zinc sulfate monohydrate 0 Zinc 26 0.00 0.74 0.39 -1.90