Feasibility and reliability of a quality indicator system for an ambulatory dispensing service

Andrea Jetzú Bautista Gómez, Maricela López Orozco, Liliana Barajas Esparza, Hermelinda de La Cruz Durán, Alejandro Chehue Romero, Isis Beatriz Bermúdez Camps, Ana María Téllez López, Laura Cristina López Vargas, María Isabel Valverde Merino, Fernando Martínez Martínez, Ivette Reyes Hernández


Background: For a medication dispensing service to function with quality, continuous evaluation is required, which is why it is necessary to have reliable measurement tools that make it possible. Quality indicators can serve as tools for managing quality, as they are variables that directly or indirectly measure changes in a situation and help evaluate the progress made in addressing it. This article aims to determine the feasibility and reliability of a quality indicator system for a drug dispensing service for paediatric outpatients in two Mexican hospitals.

Methods: A study of the development type of health systems and services at a microlevel was conducted from October 2020 to October 2021 in the pharmaceutical service of two Mexican hospitals. To determine the feasibility of the quality indicators, a retrospective evaluation was performed, which considered the indicators that could be calculated with the available information to be feasible. To determine reliability, an inter-observer agreement study (Kappa (κ)) was performed.

Results: The feasibility analysis revealed that all five reference indicators related to the structure were feasible in both hospitals. In the Infantil of the Californias hospital, all six process indicators evaluated were feasible, whilst only one was found feasible in H+ Querétaro. As for outcome indicators, only one was feasible in the Infantil of the Californias hospital. The causes of non-feasibility in both hospitals were the non-documentation of the primary data related to the stages of the process and the lack of instruments to measure patient satisfaction. The reliability of the indicators showed little variability.

Conclusion: Although not all indicators were feasible, solutions were proposed so that the 15 reference indicators could be used if an organization decided to do so. The reliability of the indicators was demonstrated, evidencing the importance of the data sheet as a tool to generate valid reliable measures.

This article is part of the Hospital pharmacy, rational use of medicines and patient safety in Latin America Special Issue: https://www.drugsincontext.com/special_issues/hospital-pharmacy-rational-use-of-medicines-and-patient-safety-in-latin-america/

Article Details

Article Type

Original Research



Publication Dates

Accepted: ; Published: .


Bautista Gómez AJ, López Orozco M, Barajas Esparza L, de La Cruz Durán H, Chehue Romero A, Bermúdez Camps IB, Téllez López AM, López Vargas LC, Valverde Merino MI, Martínez Martínez F, Reyes Hernández I. Feasibility and reliability of a quality indicator system for an ambulatory dispensing service. Drugs Context. 2024;13:2024-1-3. https://doi.org/10.7573/dic.2024-1-3

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