Antibiotic use: evaluating knowledge, attitude and practices among medical students in a sub Himalayan state

Rajiv Kumar Gupta, Parveen Singh, Renu Rani, Rashmi Kumari, Bhavna Langer, Riya Gupta


Background: The growing concern about antibiotic resistance, of late, led World Health Organization to declare it as World Health Day theme in 2011. Knowledge spreads awareness and understanding by melting the barriers of ignorance while attitudes and practices have a bearing on the health related behaviour. The present study aims at evaluating the knowledge, attitudes and practices of medical students towards antibiotic usage.

Methods: The present cross-sectional study was conducted among the Pre-final medical students (6th / 7th semester) who participated in the questionnaire survey on knowledge, attitude and practice towards antibiotics usage. The data was analysed and Chi-square was used as test of significance.

Results: Overall, 132 students were interviewed. Majority (96.2%) had heard of antibiotic resistance. About 22% of the sample stated that antibiotics can cure viral infections, among them female being in the higher proportion (p<0.05). Majority (>90%) agreed that antibiotic resistance is a serious problem and had positive attitude about population awareness campaign regarding antibiotic resistance. Among practices, higher proportion of male respondents preferred antibiotics in case of cough and sore throat. (p<0.05).

Conclusions: Despite being Pre-final MBBS students, the results have revealed that knowledge and attitude of the respondents were not up to the desired levels. The practices regarding use of antibiotics were more or less adequate. For effective curriculum, thorough knowledge and rational prescription of antibiotics needs to be reinforced among medical students both before and during internship.


Antibiotic use, KAP, Medical students

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