Healthbeat

Antibiotic over prescription in children going down, researchers say

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Children come down with a lot of things- viruses, common colds, flu, and stomach bugs- and in most cases the cure will not come from an antibiotic.

The overuse of this medication by children has been an increasing concern for parents and health professionals.

But an encouraging new trend is emerging.

The number of kids who are getting antibiotics for acute respiratory tract infections is going down.

Researchers are finding that updating pediatricians about the right way to prescribe antibiotics is helping make a difference.

Here's what they are telling the Journal of the American Medical Association: "Off guideline prescribing for these common infections decreased by nearly 50 percent for pediatricians who received the education and feedback... Parents should be confident that we have a way to get kids the right drugs at the right time to best cure their infections while minimizing unnecessary side effects."

Researchers say this was a relatively simple intervention that produced large benefits.

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