Antibiotics: Avoid When Possible

Misuse and overuse of antibiotics lead to antibiotic drug resistance.

Misuse and overuse of antibiotics lead to antibiotic drug resistance. Each year in the United States:

• At least 2 million people become infected with antibiotic resistant bacteria.

• At least 23,000 people die as a result of antibiotic resistant infections.

• Antibiotics are most often inappropriately prescribed for adults with acute bronchitis.

• The vast majority of acute bronchitis cases — more than 90 percent — have a nonbacterial cause.

Helpful Hints for Your Practice

• For patients who request a prescription, use the CDC’s Viral Rx Pad to prescribe over-the-counter treatment appropriate for acute bronchitis. The Viral Rx Pad is available on the CDC’s website.

• Provide patients with information on:

- The dangers of misusing and overusing antibiotics

- How antibiotic resistance happens

- Recommend symptomatic therapy for viral illnesses

For more information, visit our website at www.avmed.org/hedishighlight.