Improving Physicians’ Awareness of Inadequate Antibiotic Use for URTIS through an Educational Intervention: A Pilot Study
Since their discovery over 90 years ago, antibiotics have been seen as a group of essential drugs in the treatment and cure of various bacterial infections. The inappropriate use of antibiotics is considered the main determinant for the increase and development of antibiotic resistance, contributing to a higher risk of therapeutic inefficacy, particularly in the primary care setting. Thus, it is important to develop strategies directed to physicians to optimise antibiotic use, especially in the primary care setting.
The aim of this pilot study was to evaluate physicians' perceptions of the eHealthResp online platform, composed of an online course on upper respiratory infections and a mobile application.
Twelve physicians were invited to participate in this study, exploring both the online course and the mobile application, an e-health tool developed to assist primary care physicians in advising patients in cases of respiratory tract disorders. The online course, developed with a user-centred design and composed of 6 modules providing clinical information on several respiratory tract infections, such as, acute otitis media, acute rhinosinusitis, acute pharyngotonsillitis, acute tracheobronchitis, community-acquired pneumonia and COVID-19, and 4 clinical cases. Upon completion, participants answered a content validation questionnaire with quantitative and qualitative questions to evaluate the eHealthResp e-learning tools.
All 12 participants who completed the questionnaire evaluated the online course overall with a mean score of 4.46 (±0.62) out of 5. More specifically, this score was obtained by averaging all responses regarding the format, usefulness, interest and confidence given by the study participants with regard to the online course.
Regarding the evaluation of the separate modules that make up the online course, all 6 modules were individually rated with a median score of 4.0 or higher regarding their adequacy, correctness and completeness, which reflects some homogeneity of responses among physicians.
In conclusion, this study showed that eHealthResp is a useful eHealth tool for the management of upper respiratory tract infection symptoms, helping to optimise antibiotic use.
Keywords - Antibiotics Prescription; Upper Respiratory Tract Infection; Physician