Antibiotics are among the most common medications prescribed in general practice. Data are now being gathered regarding the volumes of particular antibiotics consumed in the community, for example by analysing data from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, but there is very little information available regarding the indications for use and the appropriateness of the antibiotic prescriptions. Work has already been done in this area, but there is more to be learnt about prescribing outside the residential aged care facilities context.
Using data already collected, an analysis will be done to look at patterns of antibiotic use and adherence to guidelines. We will explore attitudes that might influence prescribing and work with General Practitioners and others to determine acceptable methods to deliver information.
Ultimately we intend to have gathered information about the education needs of General Practitioners and others with regard to antibiotic prescribing and designed, trialed and evaluated interventions to identify those that are truly helpful to improve antimicrobial use in the community.