Antibiotic Use in Cold and Flu Season and Prescribing Quality

Journal Articles

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Medical Care, Vol. 53, page(s): 6

December 2015

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Excessive antibiotic use in cold and flu season is costly and contributes to antibiotic resistance, writes CHP/PCOR's Marcella Alsan and co-authors in the December 2015 issue of Medical Care. The study objective was to develop an index of excessive antibiotic use in cold and flu season and determine its correlation with other indicators of prescribing quality.

Adjusted flu-activity associated antibiotic use was positively correlated with prescribing high-risk medications to the elderly and negatively correlated with beta-blocker use after myocardial infarction. These findings suggest that excessive antibiotic use reflects low-quality prescribing. They imply that practice and policy solutions should go beyond narrow, antibiotic specific, approaches to encourage evidence-based prescribing for the elderly Medicare population.

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