Antibiotics are losing their effectiveness in combating bacterial infections, with about 1,600 people in Australia dying annually as a result of antibiotic resistance. As some patients, including older patients, may incorrectly believe antibiotics can treat all respiratory conditions, they may present to their GP and ask for antibiotics.
GPs play a critical role in educating patients and preventing unnecessary prescriptions of antibiotics. Techniques such as delayed prescribing or shared decision-making should be part of the doctor-patient conversation in an effort to arrive at the best management option.
This video from Dr Norman Swan shares more information about this issue and some practical ways to help keep your patients happy while avoiding unnecessary prescriptions of antibiotics.