Perceptions and attitudes of French general practitioners towards rapid antigen diagnostic tests in acute pharyngitis using a randomized case vignette study
ABSTRACT This study had three objectives: (i) to assess the use of rapid antigen diagnostic tests (RADTs) and their impact on the antibiotic prescribing behaviour of general practitioners (GPs) for acute pharyngitis; (ii) to study the barriers to the use of RADTs; and (iii) to identify GPs' characteristics associated with non-compliance with French guidelines.
We conducted a cross-sectional survey of a representative sample of 369 self-employed GPs in south-eastern France using a randomized case vignette study.
The availability of an RADT allowed a 44% relative reduction in the rate of antibiotic prescriptions. Of GPs for whom the test was available, 34% did not use an RADT in our acute pharyngitis vignette and 13% of those who used the test prescribed an antibiotic despite a negative RADT result. Non-compliance with French guidelines (i.e. not using an RADT and/or prescribing an antibiotic despite a negative RADT result) was independently associated with the following factors: less reading of medical journals, less benefits/risks discussion with patients about vaccinations and higher perception that clinical examination was sufficient to prescribe antibiotics. The three main declared barriers to RADT use were: time to perform the test, patient expectations regarding antibiotics and the perception that clinical examination was sufficient to decide to prescribe an antibiotic.
RADTs are a useful but not sufficient tool to reduce antibiotic prescribing in general practice. The results of this study increase understanding of the factors underlying clinical decision making for acute pharyngitis and may contribute to the development of interventions to improve practice.
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ABSTRACT: As a result of sub-optimal immunization levels, measles has re-emerged in the EU since 2008 (30 567 cases in 2011), and nearly half of the cases reported are in France. Our objectives were to assess knowledge, attitudes, beliefs and practices of French general practitioners (GPs) towards measles and measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccination. In 2012, we surveyed 329 GPs in southeastern France. Forty-five percent reported that they saw patients with measles in 2011. They considered the risk of complications low among 2-5-year-old children and young adults without co-morbidity. Twenty percent knew that two MMR doses are 99% effective in preventing measles. Nearly all (95%) GPs stated that they verified the MMR status for patients <30 years old in 2011 (42% systematically, 37% often, 15% sometimes). Seventy-nine percent reported proposing MMR vaccination to non-immune relatives in contact with a patient with measles. Participation in continuing medical education courses and considering measles to be a serious disease were independently associated with such post-exposure vaccination. GPs considered the following were potential barriers to the second dose of MMR (MMR2): parents/patients' belief that measles is harmless (80%), parents/patients' fear of the vaccine's side effects (50%), difficulty in documenting vaccination (48%) and lack of reminders for MMR2 (16%). Finally, some GPs also had misconceptions about the severity of measles (13%) and the usefulness of MMR2 (12%), which also served as barriers. In conclusion, it is essential to raise GPs' awareness of this disease and fill any gaps in their knowledge, by providing them with evidence-based information on measles and MMR vaccination.Clinical Microbiology and Infection 02/2013; 20(1). DOI:10.1111/1469-0691.12194 · 5.20 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We tested the following hypotheses: (1) risk-averse general practitioners (GPs) might use more Rapid Antigen Diagnostic Tests (RADTs) in tonsillitis in children, probably to decrease their diagnostic uncertainty regarding the aetiology of the disease (viral vs due to group A Streptococcus); and (2) GPs not using RADT might prescribe more antibiotics when they are risk averse. We conducted a cross-sectional survey of a nationwide French representative sample of 1093 GPs in 2012. Multivariate analyses adjusted on the four stratification variables (age, gender, location and volume of activity, ie, the number of annual consultations) were performed to identify the risk domains associated with indicators of good or poor practice. 69.4% of GPs were aware of national guidelines regarding tonsillitis and declared that they had taken these guidelines into account for their last paediatric tonsillitis case. 59.1% declared they used RADT in their last patient aged between 3 and 16 years presenting with tonsillitis; 29.7% of these tests were positive. Among the GPs who used RADT, 30.7% prescribed an antibiotic; 98.3% did either prescribe an antibiotic because of a positive RADT result, or did not prescribe an antibiotic in view of a negative result. Among the GPs who did not use RADT, 50.7% prescribed an antibiotic. In multivariate analyses, risk-averse GPs declared being more aware of and compliant with guidelines (OR=1.56, p<0.01), and used RADTs more often for their last patient (OR=1.30, p<0.05). Among GPs not using RADT in their last patient, risk-averse GPs prescribed more antibiotics compared with risk-tolerant doctors (OR=1.18, p<0.05). Individual risk attitudes influenced GPs' practices in tonsillitis, particularly the use of RADTs and antibiotic prescriptions.BMJ Open 10/2013; 3(10):e003540. DOI:10.1136/bmjopen-2013-003540 · 2.06 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: In this investigation, we wanted: (i) to describe the attitudes and declared practices of a representative sample of French general practitioners (GPs) regarding rapid antigen diagnostic tests (RADTs) for acute pharyngitis and (ii) to identify the GPs' characteristics associated with the use of an RADT in the last paediatric patient with pharyngitis. We performed a cross-sectional survey conducted in 2012 among a representative sample of 1,126 self-employed GPs in France. 60.1 % of GPs declared that they used an RADT in their last patient aged between 3 and 16 years presenting with acute pharyngitis; 29.6 % of these tests were positive. Among the GPs who did not use an RADT, 50.2 % prescribed an antibiotic, compared to 30.5 % of prescriptions among GPs who performed an RADT, whatever its result. In a multivariate analysis, GPs' age between 45 and 54 years and having attended Continuing Medical Education (CME) sessions on infectious diseases in the past year were significantly associated with an increased use of an RADT in the last patient with pharyngitis, whereas a low volume of activity, occasionally practising alternative medicine, receiving pharmaceutical representatives at the practice and declaring a consultation duration <15 min were factors associated with a decreased use of RADTs. The use of RADTs by GPs must be promoted; our findings could help define interventions to improve practice.European Journal of Clinical Microbiology 10/2013; DOI:10.1007/s10096-013-2003-9 · 2.54 Impact Factor