The doctor-patient relationship has been described in economic terms as an 'agency relationship' where informed agents make decisions for uninformed clients. However, the decision to prescribe and the decision to accept the prescription by the patient are more complex in nature and involve many variables. Other factors, such as the 'need' for the prescription and the disease state (acute or chronic) also influence prescribing practice. Communication between the physician and patient was found to be important for rational and effective prescribing. The client can make better decisions with the relevant information, thus breaking down the agency relationship that once existed.