About this release

The National Therapeutic Indicators (NTIs) are a set of prescribing indicators that are used for quality improvement work. The publication is an update of prescribing data analysis up to March 2022. This visualisation presents information by NHS Board, Health and Social Partnership, General Practitioner (GP) practice, GP cluster and practice peer group.

Main points

The example indicator below shows:

  • Scotland percentage of people in receipt of strong opioids who could be considered long term has stayed steady over the 3 years at around 60% of those who received any volume of strong opioids
  • NHS Lanarkshire had the highest proportion (63.9%) while NHS Lothian had the lowest (53.2%)
Image caption People prescribed strong opioids long term (>2 years) as a percentage of all people prescribed strong opioids

Further information is available from the Prescribing webpages.


The data visualisation allows a more in-depth and interactive visual analysis of the current National Therapeutic Indicators paper publication, published by the Effective Prescribing and Therapeutics Division of the Scottish Government. The visualisation includes a presentation of variation and prescribing trends, and comparisons of Health and Social Care Partnerships, GP clusters and practice peer groups. This update also provides a practice level dashboard showing comparisons between indicators, health and social care partnership trends and an NHS board indicator summary.

This interactive visualisation allows the user to look at the variation in prescribing practice between GP practices and should be useful to both prescribers and associated prescribing staff who want an easy to access visualisation view of prescribing data.

A number of interactive views are available that show:

  • A dropdown menu of indicators by therapeutic area
  • A summary page of indicators by GP practice and NHS board
  • A view of each therapeutic indicator at a specific point in time
  • The prescribing rate for each indicator over time, for Scotland, NHS Board and GP practice, by cluster, or by peer group
  • A comparison of data at three different time points for NHS Boards, Health and Social Care Partnerships and GP Clusters

This is the latest release of the data visualisation and further developments will follow, as prioritised by a steering group for this work which is commissioned by the Effective Prescribing and Therapeutics division of the Scottish Government. The update includes expanded detail for a number of indicators to help aid clinicians and prescribing advisers.

Further information

The next release of this publication will be October 2022.

General enquiries

If you have an enquiry relating to this publication, please contact phs.prescribing@phs.scot.

Media enquiries

If you have a media enquiry relating to this publication, please contact the Communications and Engagement team.

Requesting other formats and reporting issues

If you require publications or documents in other formats, please email phs.otherformats@phs.scot.

To report any issues with a publication, please email phs.generalpublications@phs.scot.

Older versions of this publication

Versions of this publication released before 16 March 2020 may be found on the Data and Intelligence, Health Protection Scotland or Improving Health websites.

Last updated: 08 March 2023
Was this page helpful?