The school’s Department of Pediatrics has mounted a campaign to highlight the need for education and awareness on antibiotic overuse in Kentucky, and to reduce inappropriate use of antibiotics in the state.
U of L researchers examined antibiotic prescriptions for Kentucky children on Medicaid and found that the rate of antibiotic use has been especially high in Eastern Kentucky. In some areas, children are receiving three times more antibiotic prescriptions than the national average.
“Antibiotics are most frequently used for upper respiratory infections, many of which are caused by viruses that antibiotics do not kill,” the U of L release said. “The majority of antibiotic prescribing is done in outpatient settings, which include medical offices, urgent care facilities, retail clinics and emergency departments. Wattles said 30 to 50 percent of this antibiotic use is estimated to be inappropriate.
“When antibiotics are prescribed, it is important to take them as instructed; do not share the medicine with others or save for later use,” the release says.
The campaign is on Facebook and Twitter. Health-care providers are encouraged to join the KAA Listserv for newsletter updates, or email KYAntibx@louisville.edu with questions and suggestions.