Physician Responses to a Community-Level Trial Promoting Judicious Antibiotic Use

Meyers Primary Care Institute, Worcester, Massachusetts 01655, USA.
The Annals of Family Medicine (Impact Factor: 5.43). 05/2008; 6(3):206-12. DOI: 10.1370/afm.839
Source: PubMed


In an environment of multiple campaigns promoting judicious antibiotic use in children, identification of effective strategies is important. We assessed physician responses to a community-level intervention with respect to antibiotic prescribing, related practices, and perceived effectiveness.
This study was a mixed qualitative and quantitative evaluation of a randomized controlled community-wide educational intervention in 16 Massachusetts communities. Physicians in intervention communities received locally endorsed guidelines, group educational sessions, and biweekly newsletters. Parents simultaneously received materials in physicians' offices and by mail. After the intervention, we conducted a mailed physician survey and individual interviews to assess the impact of the intervention. We compared survey responses for intervention and control physicians, and we analyzed interview transcripts to provide in-depth information about selected topics.
Among survey respondents (n = 168), 91% of intervention and 4% of control physicians reported receiving intervention materials. Physicians received information from multiple other sources. More intervention than control physicians reported decreased antibiotic prescribing from 2000-2003 (75% vs 58%, P = .03), but there were no differences between groups in knowledge, attitudes, or behaviors favoring judicious antibiotic use. Both groups were concerned about antibiotic resistance and reported room to reduce their own prescribing. Interviewed physicians suggested frequent repetition of messages, brief written materials on specific topics for themselves and patients, and promotion in the mass media as the most effective strategies to reduce prescribing.
In multiple communities an intervention in physician offices to promote judicious antibiotic prescribing reached its intended audience, but physicians' self-reported attitudes and practices were similar in intervention and control communities. Campaigns that repeat brief, consistent reminders to multiple stakeholder groups may be most effective at assuring judicious antibiotic use.

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    • "Our data indicate that there was no direct correlation between the student’s knowledge, attitude or public perception and their behavior towards antibiotics use. Today, many countries like Britain and Holland are focusing on public education aimed at changing the irrational and indiscriminate use of antibiotics in the community in order to delaying curtail the development resistance to antibiotics [9,24]. Whereas some researchers have reported that public education alone may not necessarily improve the tendency misuse and abuse antibiotics in the society [3], other works argue that providing clear guidelines for medical practitioners may provide a quicker and more effective route to prudent and rational use of antibiotics eventually reversing the current trend [25,26]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Recently, many scientists including bacteriologists have begun to focus on social aspects of antibiotic management especially the knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) among the general population regarding antibiotic use. However, relatively few works have published on the relationship between KAP and medical education. In this study, we analyze the present status of Chinese medical (MS)- and non-medical (NS) students' KAP on the use of antibiotics, and examine the influence of Chinese medical curriculum on the appropriate usage of antibiotics among medical students. In this study, 2500 students from 3 universities (including one medical university) in Northeastern China participate in the questionnaire survey on students' knowledge, attitude and practice toward antibiotic usage. Wilcoxon rank sum test and Chi square test were used to analyze questionnaire-related discrete and categorical variables respectively, in order to assess the impact of the medical curriculum on students' KAP towards antibiotics. 2088 (83.5%) respondents (MS-1236 and NS-852) were considered valid for analysis. The level of knowledge of MS on the proper use of antibiotics was significantly higher than that of NS (p < 0.0001). However, based on their responses on actual practice, MS were found to rely on antibiotics more than NS (p < 0.0001). Moreover, the knowledge and attitude of MS towards antibiotic use improved with the increase in grade with discriminate use of antibiotics concurrently escalating during the same period. This study indicates that Chinese medical curriculum significantly improves students' knowledge on antibiotics and raises their attention on antibiotic resistance that may result from indiscriminate use of antibiotics. The study also shows an excessive use of antibiotics especially among the more senior medical students, signifying a deficiency of antibiotics usage instruction in their curriculum. This might explain why there are frequent abuses of antibiotics in both hospital and community settings from a certain angle.
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    • "However, a relationship has also been seen between use of antibiotics and antibiotic resistance at an individual level [3,4,6]. For these GPs information and education on prescribing and antibiotic resistance are needed [24,41]. "
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    ABSTRACT: It is important to keep the level of antibiotic prescribing low to contain the development of resistant bacteria. This study was conducted to reveal new knowledge about how GPs think in relation to the prescribing of antibiotics - knowledge that could be used in efforts toward rational treatment of infectious diseases in primary care. The aim was to explore and describe the variations in GPs' perceptions of infectious disease management, with special reference to antibiotic prescribing. Twenty GPs working at primary care centres in a county in south-west Sweden were purposively selected based on the strategy of including GPs with different kinds of experience. The GPs were interviewed and perceptions among GPs were analysed by a phenomenographic approach. Five qualitatively different perceptions of infectious disease management were identified. They were: (A) the GP must help the patient to achieve health and well-being; (B) the management must meet the GP's perceived personal, professional and organisational demands; (C) restrictive antibiotic prescribing is time-consuming; (D) restrictive antibiotic prescribing can protect the effectiveness of antibiotics; and (E) patients benefit personally from restrictive antibiotic prescribing. Restrictive antibiotic prescribing was considered important in two perceptions, was not an issue as such in two others, and was considered in one perception although the actual prescribing was greatly influenced by the interaction between patient and GP. Accordingly, to encourage restrictive antibiotic prescribing several aspects must be addressed. Furthermore, different GPs need various kinds of support. Infectious disease management in primary care is complex and time-consuming, which must be acknowledged in healthcare organisation and planning.
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