M. Ababneh, S. Al‐Azzam, R. Ababneh
Mar 1, 2017
Background Most acute respiratory infections (ARIs) in children are due to viral etiology; however, over-prescribing of antibiotics for ARIs is common. The aim of this investigation was to identify antibiotic prescribing prevalence for children with ARIs and to identify predictors of broad-spectrum antibiotic prescribing. Methods This was a prospective cross sectional study in a sample of ambulatory care settings in Jordan. Children (<18 years) presenting with ARIs were assessed in terms of patient's demographics, antibiotic prescription and clinical diagnosis. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was used to identify predictors of broad-spectrum antibiotic prescription. Results Antibiotics were prescribed for 78.4% (4575/5829) of children with ARIs. Antibiotic prescription for ARIs for which antibiotics are not indicated was 69.2% (2688/3883). Broad-spectrum antibiotic prescription occurred in 51.1% (2337/4575) of all antibiotic-prescribed participants. Some of the predictors of broad-spectrum antibiotic prescription were: otitis media (OR 4.93 [95% CI 3.44-7.14]), tonsillitis (OR 6.03 [95% CI 4.39-8.33]), age 0-5 years (OR 1.17 [95% CI 1.02-1.38]) compared to age 6-12 years, fever (OR 2.14 [95% CI 1.78-2.59]), outpatient setting (OR 73 [95% CI 2.17-3.42]) and military sector (OR 2.29 [95% CI 1.82-2.90]). Conclusions Antibiotic prescribing is high and often inappropriate. Predictors of broad-spectrum antibiotic prescribing were identified. Health policy initiatives should involve all stakeholders to minimize inappropriate antibiotic prescription and to prevent poor outcomes associated with such practice.