55% of patients were prescribed antibiotics for preventive indications, 45% for therapeutic indications: NCDC survey

Syllabus: GS-III

Subject: Science and Technology

Topic: Health.

Issue: Anti-Microbial Resistance.

Context:   A recent survey by India’s NCDC reveals alarming antibiotic prescription trends, with over half given preventively. This misuse contributes to antimicrobial resistance, a serious global health concern.


Highlights of The Survey:

  • A recent survey by India’s National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) reveals concerning trends in antibiotic prescriptions:
  • 55% of patients received antibiotics for prevention, not treatment.
  • 94% were given antibiotics before a confirmed diagnosis.
  • Antibiotic misuse contributes to antimicrobial resistance (AMR), a major global health threat.
  • Significant variations (37% to 100%) in antibiotic prescription rates among surveyed hospitals.
  • 57% of prescriptions were for antibiotics prone to resistance (Watch group).
  • The survey emphasizes the need for responsible antibiotic use to curb AMR.
The National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC):

It is an institute under the Indian Directorate General of Health Services, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.


·          The nodal agency in the country for disease surveillance facilitating prevention and control of communicable diseases.

·          It also deals with antimicrobial resistance (AMR), an emerging area of concern with far-reaching consequences.

·          It also provides referral diagnostic support, capacity building and technical support to States/UTs in the country.

Conclusion: The survey underscores the urgency of addressing inappropriate antibiotic use to curb antimicrobial resistance. Effective strategies and awareness are crucial to preserving the efficacy of antibiotics for future healthcare.

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