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Annual antibiotics report sees ‘marginal’ decline in GP prescribing

ESPAUR highlights patient knowledge of antibiotic use

November 25th 2022

Tagged: Clinical guidance news NHS statistical reports England

By Charles Gladwin

Antibiotic prescribing remained highest in general practice, accounting for 72.1 per cent of antibiotic use in 2021. This was a “marginal reduction” from 11.65 to 11.49 defined daily doses (DDDs) per 1,000 inhabitants per day, between 2020 and 2021.

The figures are included in the UK Health Security Agency’s annual report, ‘English surveillance programme for antimicrobial utilisation and resistance (ESPAUR)’ for 2021 to 2022. The ESPAUR report includes national data on antibiotic prescribing and resistance, antimicrobial stewardship implementation, and awareness activities.

Feedback from the Pharmacy Quality Scheme 2021-2022 (with data from 8,374 community pharmacies in England) suggests that patients had “good” general knowledge about antibiotic use. “However, areas requiring advice from the pharmacy team included side effects (17%); symptom duration (15%); food consumption (15%) and alcohol (13%) guidance; and missed dose (12%).”