Doctors'self-prescribing behavior: an exploratory study


  • Shakeel Ahmad Mir Department of Clinical Pharmacology, Sher-I-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, Srinagar, Kashmir, India
  • Junaid Ahmed Ahangar Senior Resident, Department of Clinical Pharmacology, Sher-I-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences, Srinagar, Kashmir, India
  • Danish Shakeel Student, Department of Computer Sciences and Engineering, University Institute of Engineering, Chandigarh University, Mohali, Punjab, India



Disease, Doctor, Drugs, Self-prescribing, Treatment


Background: Self-prescribing among doctors is common. But the General Medical Council (GMC) and American Medical Council recommend that doctors should avoid prescribing for themselves, and close family members. Self-prescribing can lead to serious consequences.  The present study reports the prevalence and pattern of self-prescribing among doctors working in various healthcare facilities of Kashmir Valley.

Methods: Pre-validated questionnaires were sent to 200 doctors selected by convenience sampling. Only 184 returned the completely filled questionnaires.

Results: At which 95.7% male doctors and 97.8% female doctors were self-prescribing. 100% doctors above the age of 40 years were self-prescribing. 100% post graduate students and consultants were practicing self-prescribing. 98.0% of those active as doctors for 1-5 years and 95.1% of those active for more than five years were self-prescribing. 60.7% doctors cited convenience, 40.4% time saving, 27.0% quick relief, 60.7% confidence, 14.6% low cost of treatment, and 15.7% crowd avoidance as a reason for self-prescribing. Major diseases self-treated were: headache (78.7%), respiratory symptoms (79.8%), fever (53.9%) and pain syndromes (31.5%). Major drugs used were: analgesics (80.9%), antipyretics (68.5%), antibiotics (58.4%), decongestants (49.4%) and antispasmodics (33.7%).

Conclusions: The observed prevalence of self-prescribing was very high in this study. The issue of self-prescribing is common and requires attention.


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How to Cite

Mir, S. A., Ahangar, J. A., & Shakeel, D. (2020). Doctors’self-prescribing behavior: an exploratory study. International Journal of Research in Medical Sciences, 8(2), 696–700.



Original Research Articles