Educational Posters to Reduce Antibiotic Use

Department of Pediatrics, New York Medical College, Valhalla, NY, USA.
Journal of Pediatric Health Care (Impact Factor: 1.44). 05/2006; 20(3):192-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.pedhc.2005.12.017
Source: PubMed


Antibiotic overuse promotes resistant strains of bacteria and puts patients at risk for adverse reactions. Given the use of educational posters in government-sponsored public health campaigns, this study examined the effectiveness of a waiting room poster in reducing excessive antibiotic use in clinical practice.
Investigators conducted a 1-month trial of an educational poster with historical controls using three private pediatric group practices in Westchester County, New York. Children between the ages of 6 months and 10 years at the time of a visit to diagnose and treat symptoms of respiratory illness were enrolled as subjects. Antibiotic prescriptions for children with respiratory illnesses seen during the poster month were compared with prescriptions written during three 1-month historical control periods. The proportion of visits that resulted in a prescription for an antibiotic served as the outcome measure.
Overall, 326 of the 720 patients (45.2%) enrolled in the study were treated with an antibiotic. Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed no statistically significant difference in the proportion of visits resulting in an antibiotic prescription among the 4 study months (P = .79), indicating that the educational poster had no effect on antibiotic use.
Public education in the form of a waiting room poster was not sufficient to decrease antibiotic prescriptions. This finding has implications for current large-scale programs and for health care providers as they continue to attempt to educate patients on the appropriate use of antibiotics.

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Available from: Patricia A Patrick, Jul 28, 2015
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    • "Although posters can increase awareness of health promotion issues, [6] their messages are not necessarily effective in changing patients’ behaviour and lifestyles. Ashe et al. showed that public education in the form of waiting room posters was not sufficient to decrease antibiotic prescriptions [14]. "
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