GP-NAPS: The feasibility of passive audit of antibiotic prescribing in general practice

  • Principal Investigator
    A/Prof Jo-Anne Manski-Nankervis

Project Details

GPs provide nearly 9 out of 10 prescriptions for antibiotics. A high rate of this antibiotic prescribing does not comply with Therapeutic Guidelines. This means that many antibiotic prescriptions are inappropriate, which is a problem given the global increase in antibiotic resistant bacteria.

This project is determining the feasibility of a passive GP National Antibiotic Prescribing Survey (NAPS) rather than using onsite auditing of patient files. This would form a key component of a quality improvement activity to optimize appropriate antibiotic prescribing in general practice.

Ethics approval - The University of Melbourne

Research Outcomes

The majority of antibiotic prescribing in humans occurs in general practice. Exploring these prescriptions, which are stored in electronic medical records, is important to inform strategies to optimise safe prescribing which can both improve health outcomes and reduce the risk of antimicrobial resistance.

In our study, we reviewed 1926 antibiotic prescriptions for four common infections: tonsillitis, pharyngitis (sore throat), acute rhinosinusitis and acute otitis media (inner ear infection), from 11 general practices and compared them to current guidelines.

We found that it was feasible to explore the appropriateness of prescribing using electronic medical record data. Our key findings were that dosing of antibiotics for acute otitis media in children, tonsillitis and pharyngitis in adults, and antibiotic prescribing for acute rhinosinusitis more broadly could be potential areas for quality improvement in antibiotic prescribing.

If you are interested in reading the study, it is available open access in the Australian Journal of General Practice

Research Group

Data for Decisions

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

General Practice and Primary Care

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