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Confidence in Antibiotic Prescribing Intentions among Senior Medical Students in India

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  • 1 K.S. Hegde Medical Academy, Mangaluru, India;
  • 2 Department of Mathematics, Manipal Institute of Technology, Manipal, India;
  • 3 Department of Pediatrics, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina

ABSTRACT

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a major public health problem in India. We surveyed medical students to assess their knowledge, attitudes, and factors associated with confidence in antibiotic prescribing intent. In this cross-sectional study, a convenience sample of 356 students were surveyed in July–August 2017 on AMR-related knowledge, attitudes, information sources and antimicrobial training. Antimicrobial resistance knowledge and attitude scores were calculated. Bivariate analysis using the chi-square test of independence and multivariate binary logistic regression analysis were used to investigate factors associated with confidence in antibiotic prescribing intent. A total of 347 students completed the survey; 64% agreed that strong knowledge of antibiotics is important in their medical careers; 61% stated that they would like more education regarding appropriate use of antibiotics. The mean total knowledge score was 11.5 out of 31 (SD = 3.4), and the mean attitude score was 6.0 out of 16 (SD = 4.2). Although 13% of students were “very familiar”/“familiar” with the term “antimicrobial stewardship,” only 35% of students felt “very confident” or “confident” in antimicrobial prescribing to patients in the future. On multivariate analysis, female gender, clinical vignette antimicrobial knowledge scores, positive attitude scores, awareness of Infection Control Policy, and > 3 years of antimicrobial prescribing clinical training were predictors of confidence in antimicrobial prescribing. A higher attitude score was independently associated with decreased confidence in antimicrobial prescribing intent. There is a need to improve education regarding AMR in the curriculum, and increase awareness of infection control policies and antimicrobial stewardship program in clinical settings.

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Author Notes

Address correspondence to Avinash K. Shetty, Department of Pediatrics, Wake Forest School of Medicine and Brenner Children’s Hospital, Medical Center Blvd., Meads Hall, 3rd Floor, Winston-Salem, NC 27103. E-mail: ashetty@wakehealth.edu

Disclosure: All authors have submitted the ICMJE Form for Disclosure of Potential.

Financial support: The project was funded by the NIH T35 Short-Term Medical Student Research Training Grant awarded to Wake Forest School of Medicine.

Authors’ addresses: Olivia Ritchie and Avinash K. Shetty, Department of Pediatrics, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC, E-mails: omenden@wakehealth.edu and ashetty@wakehealth.edu. Veena Shetty, Department of Microbiology, K.S. Hegde Medical Academy, NITTE (Deemed to be University), Mangaluru, India, E-mail: vndshetty@yahoo.co.in. Sumathi Prabhu, Department of Mathematics, Manipal Institute of Technology, Manipal, India, E-mail: k.sumathi@manipal.edu.

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