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Review: quality improvement interventions reduce unnecessary prescription of antibiotics for outpatientsCommentary

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S R Ranji

Dr S R Ranji, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA; sumantr@medicine.ucsf.edu

QUESTION

Do quality improvement interventions reduce unnecessary prescribing of antibiotics for outpatients with acute illnesses?

REVIEW SCOPE

Studies selected evaluated 1 of 6 strategies (clinician education, patient education, delayed prescriptions, audit and feedback, clinician reminders and decision support systems, and financial and regulatory incentives and disincentives) intended to reduce unnecessary prescribing of antibiotics for outpatients with acute non-bacterial illnesses, and reported data on antibiotic prescribing or use before and after the intervention. Outcomes included proportion of patient visits with a prescription for antibiotics and clinical outcomes (eg, symptom resolution).

REVIEW METHODS

Cochrane Collaboration Effective Practice and Organisation of Care database (1966 to Aug 2005), Medline (Jun 2005 to Mar 2007), and reference lists were …

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