As you advance in rate to Hospital Corpsman First Class and eventually Chief Hospital Corpsman, your work will become more and more specialized, and your responsibilities will involve more supervision and training of others. Not only will you probably head a department, but you will also have more people working under your supervision in various capacities. One of these departments for which you might conceivably become responsible is the pharmacy, the service that fills prescriptions.
This section is a continuation of the chapter on pharmacy in the HM 3 & 2 training course. Review of that chapter at this time is advisable.
The key instrument used in the pharmacy is the prescriptionthe written order from the prescriber directing the pharmacy to compound and dispense a drug or medication for the use of the patient. To accomplish this correctly, you must thoroughly understand prescription writing and filling.
Any information pertaining to the prescription is confidential and shall not be made known to persons not involved.
Another important point to remember is that a prescription or any part of it cannot be applied or transferred to any person other than the patient specified.
Because regulations and policies sometimes change, it is important that you are familiar with Chapter 21 of the Manual of the Medical Department (MANMED). Chapter 21, MANMED is the basic guide to pharmacy operations.
For proper use, the prescription must contain certain information written legibly in ink on a bonafide prescription blank (DD Form 1289, fig. 4-1 ) or a polyprescription blank (NAVMED 6710/6, fig. 4-2). The prescription shall contain the name of the ship or station where it was written. This is important if the source of prescribing has to be traced.
To avoid errors, make sure that the patients full name, rate, address, and age if under 12 is written clearly on the prescription. This will aid in getting the right medication to the patient for whom it is intended.
The superscription Rx means take or take thou or in effect, I want this patient to have the following medication.
The inscription is that part of the prescription that lists the names and quantities of the ingredients to be used. Legibility here is of utmost importance, since the spelling of a great many unrelated drugs is quite similar. Whenever there is doubt as to the drugs or their amounts listed in the inscription, always double-check with the prescriber. Use the metric system to list amounts.
The subscription follows the inscription and is that part of the prescription that gives directions to the compounder.
The signa, not to be confused with the prescribe's signature, is that part of the prescription that gives the directions for the patient. This portion is preceded by the abbreviation Sig.
Finally, all prescriptions must be signed by the prescriber. Ensure that the prescribers full name signature is legible and that the rate or rank, corps, and service are included. Mimeographed, preprinted, or rubber-stamped prescriptions may be used, but signatures must be original, in the handwriting of the prescriber, are not acceptable.
Facsimiles According to chapter 21, MANMED, the following persons are authorized to write prescriptions: officers of the Medical and Dental Corps, Medical Service Corps podiatrists, civilian