Physicians are prescribing antibiotics to elderly patients who don’t need them, according to research described by Physician’s Briefing.

The researchers found that 46 percent of the patients received an antibiotic prescription, with 69.9 percent of prescriptions for broad-spectrum agents. The likelihood of receiving prescriptions was increased for mid- and late-career physicians versus early-career physicians (rate difference, 5.1 and 4.6 percent, respectively), physicians trained outside the United States or Canada (3.6 percent), and physicians who saw 25 to 44 or 45 or more versus fewer than 25 patients per day (3.1 and 4.1 percent, respectively).

“In this low-risk elderly cohort, 46 percent of patients with a nonbacterial AURI were prescribed antibiotics,” the authors write.

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