Parents Knowledge and Attitudes Towards the use of Antibiotics in Patients within the Paediatric age Range.
Ana Sofia Esteireiro1, Vânia Morais2, Cristina Jesus Henriques3, Sara C. Ferreira4, Maria Clara Nobre2.
1Serviço de Pediatria, Hospital das Caldas da Rainha, Centro Hospitalar do Oeste, Caldas da Rainha, Portugal and Unidade de Saúde Familiar D. Jordão, ACES Oeste Sul, ARSLVT, Portugal,
2Unidade de Saúde Familiar D. Jordão, ACES Oeste Sul, ARSLVT, Portugal,
3Centro de Saúde de São Roque, ACES RAM, SESARAM, Portugal,
4Unidade de Saúde Familiar Sétima Colina, ACES Lisboa Central, ARSLVT, Portugal.
Aim: To assess parents' knowledge and attitudes towards the use of antibiotics within the paediatric age range.
Methods and Materials: This observational, descriptive and cross-sectional study, with a voluntary and anonymous questionnaire, was implemented over three months to a sample of parents of children and teenagers enrolled on two Family Health Units, D. Jordão (rural area) and Sétima Colina (urban area).
Results: A total of 294 valid questionnaires were obtained. Only 149 (51%) answered that antibiotics treat bacterial infections, 101 (34%) believed that they help in the recovery of flu, and 36 (12%) considered that they should always be used in case of fever. Two hundred twenty-seven (77%), identified misuse of antimicrobials as a cause of bacterial resistance, even so, 31% became concerned if the doctor does not prescribe these drugs. Only 87 (30%) showed a high level of knowledge and a statistically significant correlation existed between higher age of parents [Odd’s ratio (OR) =2.37], education (OR=3.42), confidence in doctors (OR=2.06) and level of knowledge of respondents. There was no statistically significant difference between the level of knowledge of users in the rural environment compared to those in the urban environment (p=0.546).
Conclusion: Most parents are unaware of antibiotics’ function, as well as the difference between viral and bacterial infections. Although they identify that misuse of these drugs may lead to bacterial resistance, parents become reluctant when antibiotics are not prescribed.

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