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NCDC survey of usage of Antibiotics  |

NCDC survey of usage of Antibiotics 

Context

∙ The National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) conducted a survey of antibiotics use across 15 States and two Union Territories.

Key findings

∙ Out of 11,588 admissions and 9,652 eligible patients, 72% were prescribed antibiotics.

∙ Of these, only 45% were prescribed antibiotics for therapeutic indications, meant to treat infection or disease.

∙ The remaining 55% were prescribed the drugs for prophylactic indications, meant to prevent the occurrence or spread of an infection.

∙ Only 6% were prescribed antibiotics after a confirmed diagnosis of the specific bacteria causing their illness, called definitive therapy.

∙ The remaining 94% were prescribed based on the doctor’s clinical experience in assessing the likely cause of an illness, called empirical therapy.

∙ Using the WHO’s Access, Watch and Reserve (AWaRe) classification, it was found that

∙ Only 38% of the prescriptions belonged to the Access group,

∙ 57% of the prescriptions were belonging to the Watch group,

∙ 2% of the antibiotics prescribed were from the Reserve group.

AWaRe Classification of Antibiotics

∙ The AWaRe classification is intended as a tool for monitoring antibiotic consumption, defining targets and monitoring the effects of stewardship policies that aim to optimize antibiotic use and curb antimicrobial resistance.

∙ It was developed in 2017 by the WHO Expert Committee.

∙ Antibiotics are classified into three groups, Access, Watch and Reserve. It is updated every 2 years.

a. The Access group offers the best therapeutic value, while minimizing the potential for resistance.

b. The Watch group is indicated for a specific, limited number of infective syndromes and are more prone to be a target of antibiotic resistance. These antibiotics have a higher potential to develop antibiotic resistance.

c. The Reserve group of drugs are used as a last resort.

What is Antimicrobial Resistance?

∙ Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites change over time and no longer respond to medicines making infections harder to treat and increasing the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death.

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