Prescribers today encounter increasing demands for up-to-date knowledge of medical advances and drug therapies, and for a straightforward dialogue with patients. Cost-effective drug treatment calls for fast and intuitive access to information about drugs, treatment strategies and patient data. There are several computer-based drug-prescribing systems in Sweden. Information independent of the drug industry is wanting, as are uniform national standards for medical content and functionality. Decision-support systems must facilitate decisions about therapy, drug distribution and intake, as well as quality work, i.e. support the entire process which defines an effective drug therapy. A very important feature is access to a patient's drug list showing all current drugs. This joint initiative by county councils aims at drawing up a national Swedish specification of requirements for a suitable decision-support system and at creating a national entity responsible for distributing unbiased information from a unique database to a range of computerized medical records systems.