International Journal of Clinical Pharmacy

, Volume 40, Issue 1, pp 15–19 | Cite as

Implementing a screening tool to improve prescribing in hospitalized older patients: a pilot study

  • Anne-Laure SennesaelEmail author
  • Olivia Dalleur
  • Séverine Henrard
  • Charline Artoisenet
  • Didier Schoevaerdts
  • Anne Spinewine
Short Research Report


Background The use of STOPP–START criteria during hospitalization reduced inappropriate medications in randomized controlled trials. Objective To evaluate whether the implementation of a screening tool (short version of STOPP–START criteria) in routine geriatric practice reduces potentially inappropriate medications (PIM) and potential prescribing omissions (PPO) at discharge. Methods We conducted a retrospective interrupted time series analysis. Four periods were selected between February and September 2013: (1) baseline situation; (2) screening tool made available to physicians; (3) 3 months later; (4) weekly meetings with junior doctors and a clinical pharmacist to review treatments according to the tool. The primary outcome was the proportion of patients with prescribing improvement from admission to discharge. Results We included 120 patients (median age 85 years). The prevalence of PIMs and PPOs on admission was 56% (67/120) and 51% (61/120) respectively. Hospitalization improved prescribing appropriateness in 49% of patients with PIMs (33/67) and 39% of patients with PPOs (24/61). The use of the screening tool by way of multidisciplinary meetings was a predictor of PIMs reduction at discharge. Conclusions The sole distribution of a screening tool in a geriatric unit did not reduce PIMs and PPOs. Multidisciplinary meetings to review treatments should be encouraged.


Belgium Hospitalisation Inappropriate prescribing Older patients STOPP/START criteria 



This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Conflicts of interest

The authors declared that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11096_2017_563_MOESM1_ESM.docx (108 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 108 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Clinical Pharmacy Research Group, Louvain Drug Research InstituteUniversité catholique de LouvainBrusselsBelgium
  2. 2.Department of Pharmacy, Cliniques Universitaires Saint-LucUniversité catholique de LouvainBrusselsBelgium
  3. 3.Institute of Health and SocietyUniversité catholique de LouvainBrusselsBelgium
  4. 4.CHU UCL Namur, Department of PharmacyUniversité catholique de LouvainYvoirBelgium
  5. 5.CHU UCL Namur, Department of Geriatric MedicineUniversité catholique de LouvainYvoirBelgium

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