Journal Article

Preventing the Spread of Antimicrobial Resistance Among Bacterial Respiratory Pathogens in Industrialized Countries: The Case for Judicious Antimicrobial Use

Benjamin Schwartz

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 28, issue 2, pages 211-213
Published in print February 1999 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online February 1999 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/515115
Preventing the Spread of Antimicrobial Resistance Among Bacterial Respiratory Pathogens in Industrialized Countries: The Case for Judicious Antimicrobial Use

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The spread of antimicrobial resistance is an important emerging health threat in developed countries. Widespread outpatient antimicrobial use leads to the spread of resistance among community- acquired pathogens such as Streptococcus pneumoniae. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and partner organizations have initiated a national campaign promoting more judicious antimicrobial use to decrease the spread of resistance. The initial focus is to improve management of respiratory tract infections, which account for most outpatient antimicrobial use. Survey and focus group results indicate that patient pressure and suboptimal diagnosis and treatment contribute to antibiotic overuse. To educate physicians, a series of “principles of judicious antibiotic use” have been developed that identify optimal approaches to management of common respiratory infections. Patient education materials and strategies to improve doctor-patient communication also have been developed. Several studies currently under way will evaluate the impact of intervention on antibiotic use practices and resistant carriage or infection.

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Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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