Two Parameters for Legible Handwriting in the Medical Setting

Two Parameters for Legible Handwriting in the Medical Setting

Handwriting is a communication activity that we cannot escape doing unless our hands are crippled to the point that we cannot write.

Even with the presence of typewriters, computers and information technology, we cannot avoid doing handwriting.  We hand write to issue checks.  We hand write to send short messages.  We hand write on the charts of patients.  We hand write our records of surgical operations.  We hand write on the outpatient records of our patients.  We hand write our prescriptions.  Handwriting is here to stay.

Handwriting is a communication activity.  Thus, handwriting should be legible.

Legible handwriting is a handwriting with message or messages clear enough to be read and to be deciphered.

Before, I used only one parameter to determine legibility of handwriting, the formation of the letters.  I tried to read and decipher the letters that comprise a word.  If I can read and decipher all the letters that comprise all the words in the message, then I say the handwriting is legible.

Recently, I discovered another parameter for legible handwriting, the size of the letters and words.  The size should be big enough that one can easily read and decipher all the letters that comprise all the words in the handwriting at a distance of one foot.

Below are examples of legible and illegible handwriting based on the two parameters,formation and size of letters and words.

Note the difference in handwriting legibility secondary to size of the letters and words.

handwriting_legible_opd_15mar

Note the difference in handwriting legibility secondary to size of the letters and words.

handwriting_legible_operative_record_15jul

Note the difference in handwriting legibility secondary to formation of letters and words.

handwriting_legible_chart2_15jul

Note the legibility of the handwriting because of proper size of letters and words.

handwriting_legible_opd_15jul

Note the legibility of the handwriting because of proper formation of letters and words.

handwriting_legible_chart1_15jul

ROJ@15jul19

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