Senior researcher Dr Duane Blaauw from the Centre for Health Policy presented some preliminary findings to the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Antimicrobial Resistance and Antimicrobial Stewardship in South Africa for the project on “Antibiotic Prescribing behaviours in primary care: public versus private sector in South Africa”.
The presentation was well-received, generating interest for more research in this area especially using the gold-standard methodology known as “standardised patients”. The research findings found that there is high unnecessary antibiotic prescribing in both the public (78%) and private (67%) sector in primary health care. This finding raised concerns spurring on more research for evidence-based initiatives so that effective policies and interventions can be implemented to reduce the high rates of unnecessary antibiotic prescribing currently occurring in South Africa. There was also high interest in the publication of these results in academic journals in order to share with practicing primary care providers in South Africa.