Prescription-writing with a PC

Scott I. Allen, Richard S. Johannes, Crawford S. Brown, David M. Kafonek, Perry S. Plexico

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We described the development of an automated system to perform writing of prescriptions and associated advice. A prototype computer program has been in operation in a dermatologist's office for three years. All prescriptions are routinely generated using the system. The program, originally developed for a multi-user computer system, now operates in a self-contained personal computer. The program is constructed to use external human-readable files as the drug formulary or data base. Experience with this system and efforts to expand its applicability to another ambulatory care setting (gastroenterology) are described. Rapid access to drug names and related information is achieved using diagnosis-specific subsets contained in the personally defined formulary. This organization supports rapid pruning of the list of drugs. From this point, a prescription of the selected drug is displayed on a video terminal. The base-level prescription is easily modified using only five keys organized in a cluster. Preliminary training and performance studies are summarized.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-135
Number of pages9
JournalComputer Methods and Programs in Biomedicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1986


  • Dermatology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Prescription writing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Health Informatics


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