How to placate parents about the need for antibiotics

IN THE US, as in Australia, there is concern about antibiotic resistance. A study in Seattle examines how communication between doctors and parents influences prescribing to children.

This study involved 1284 parents with children who had a suspected respiratory tract infection. After the consultation, the parents rated the quality of care.

Antibiotics were prescribed in 34% of cases but for only 5% of cases of viral illness. Analysis showed that giving positive recommendations for treatment was associated with a 52% reduction in the risk of