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Doctors� poor handwriting killing thousands

By Raju Das
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SHILLONG, July 12 - �ABSOLUTELY CORRECT�, Director of North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Science (NEIGRIHMS), Dr AH Ahangar answered in capital letters to a question.

Ahangar, known for his wit, wrote when he was asked about his view about Union Health Minster JP Nadda�s recent proposal that doctors should write in block letters while prescribing medicines to avoid confusion. �Absolutely correct. I do endorse the same�, Dr Ahangar said while writing about the Union Health Minister�s proposal.

Nadda�s concern about bad handwriting is not something out of the ordinary because several other people around the world have expressed similar views and concern.

Let�s say we are thinking on the subject of bad handwriting and the probability of thinking about our family doctor cannot be ruled out. All around the world doctors and messy handwriting are somewhat synonymous and there are thousands of jokes on the subject.

But what is not funny is that several thousand people die every year due to doctors� poor handwriting. These deaths have been termed as patients dying due to �non-medical reasons� as wrong drugs were prescribed due to illegible handwriting. Annually in the US alone, over 5,000 patients die due to �non-medical reasons.� In India, there are no such studies, but the figures could be more.

The Assam Tribune asked, apart from Dr Ahangar, other doctors in the State capital about the Union Health Minster�s proposal. Dr Aman War, president of Meghalaya Medical Service Association said, �if any decision is taken for the overall health and benefit of the patients that has to be welcomed,� Dr War said.

Dr C Daniala, a professor in Radiology department at NEIGRIHMS said, �it is a good idea to write in block letters for all medical prescriptions. Best will be to get it typed on computer.� Dr Daniala went on further and said, �most of the time, we cannot read the handwriting of our own colleagues, sometimes even our own.�

Meanwhile, the Union Health Ministry would came out with a �clear� gazette notification which would mandate doctors to write in block letters in prescribing drugs and also giving out their generic names.

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Doctors� poor handwriting killing thousands

SHILLONG, July 12 - �ABSOLUTELY CORRECT�, Director of North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Science (NEIGRIHMS), Dr AH Ahangar answered in capital letters to a question.

Ahangar, known for his wit, wrote when he was asked about his view about Union Health Minster JP Nadda�s recent proposal that doctors should write in block letters while prescribing medicines to avoid confusion. �Absolutely correct. I do endorse the same�, Dr Ahangar said while writing about the Union Health Minister�s proposal.

Nadda�s concern about bad handwriting is not something out of the ordinary because several other people around the world have expressed similar views and concern.

Let�s say we are thinking on the subject of bad handwriting and the probability of thinking about our family doctor cannot be ruled out. All around the world doctors and messy handwriting are somewhat synonymous and there are thousands of jokes on the subject.

But what is not funny is that several thousand people die every year due to doctors� poor handwriting. These deaths have been termed as patients dying due to �non-medical reasons� as wrong drugs were prescribed due to illegible handwriting. Annually in the US alone, over 5,000 patients die due to �non-medical reasons.� In India, there are no such studies, but the figures could be more.

The Assam Tribune asked, apart from Dr Ahangar, other doctors in the State capital about the Union Health Minster�s proposal. Dr Aman War, president of Meghalaya Medical Service Association said, �if any decision is taken for the overall health and benefit of the patients that has to be welcomed,� Dr War said.

Dr C Daniala, a professor in Radiology department at NEIGRIHMS said, �it is a good idea to write in block letters for all medical prescriptions. Best will be to get it typed on computer.� Dr Daniala went on further and said, �most of the time, we cannot read the handwriting of our own colleagues, sometimes even our own.�

Meanwhile, the Union Health Ministry would came out with a �clear� gazette notification which would mandate doctors to write in block letters in prescribing drugs and also giving out their generic names.