Evidence-based strategies for better antibiotic prescribing

Parker Magin, Andrew R. Davey, Joshua Davis

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    BACKGROUND: Antibiotic resistance is a key global health threat, and antibiotic overuse is a significant contributing factor. Antibiotic stewardship is a vital issue for general practice. 

    OBJECTIVE: The aim of this article is to discuss evidence-based strategies for general practitioners (GPs) and general practices to contribute to antibiotic stewardship and, thus, reduce the overall burden of antibiotic prescribing in the community. 

    DISCUSSION: For individual GPs, and for practices, there is good evidence for the effectiveness of several strategies. As well as having a firm grasp of the clinical evidence in the area, important strategies for GPs include: eliciting and exploring patient understanding and expectations, and incorporating these in communication and management; offering delayed prescribing; using appropriate non-antibiotic symptomatic management; and, when prescribing antibiotics, doing so only for genuine clinical indications, with the appropriate antibiotic, at the appropriate dose, for the shortest appropriate duration. Practices can adopt a practice culture and practice-wide prescribing policies that promote antibiotic stewardship.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)21-24
    Number of pages4
    JournalAustralian journal of general practice
    Issue number1-2
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2022


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