What is known and objective: Identifying, preventing and resolving drug-related problems (DRP) is an important issue in the pharmaceutical care process. Because DRPs have been detected in a more systematic way, the need for a classification system to document, classify and evaluate the collected data has become necessary. The objective was to develop a classification system for DRPs within the hospital setting, to evaluate the practicality and to assess the inter-rater reliability.
Methods: All DRPs defined in PI-Doc and PCNE, which are relevant in the hospital setting, were included. Further relevant DRPs identified in other projects in a hospital setting as well as DRPs from the daily work on the ward were collected, and a short description of each DRP was written. A prospective study was conducted at Klinikum Fulda, Germany, in both a non-surgical and a surgical setting to explore whether the new classification system is suitable to classify DRPs in clinics with different specifications. For assessing the inter-rater reliability, 24 standardized case reports were provided. All participants classified them independently. The inter-rater reliability was analysed using Kappa coefficient.
Results and discussion: A classification system for DRPs in the hospital setting (APS-Doc) was established with 10 main categories and 48 subcategories. Practicality was assessed in 250 patients in a non-surgical ward as well as in 100 patients in a surgical ward. The inter-rater agreement was 0·68 (95% CI, 0·66-0·69) for main categories, which comprises substantial agreement. Moderate agreement (κ = 0·58; 95% CI, 0·58-0·59) was demonstrated for the subcategories.
What is new and conclusion: A new hierarchical classification system for DRPs in the hospital setting has been developed. APS-Doc seems suitable for various parts of the medication process such as medication reconciliation and drug therapy within both non-surgical and surgical wards. Inter-rater reliability was found to be substantial in the main categories and moderate in the subcategories.
© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.