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Barnett ML, Linder JA. Antibiotic Prescribing for Adults With Acute Bronchitis in the United States, 1996-2010. JAMA. 2014;311(19):2020–2022. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.286141
Acute bronchitis is a cough-predominant acute respiratory illness of less than 3 weeks’ duration. For more than 40 years, trials have shown that antibiotics are not effective for acute bronchitis.1 Despite this, between 1980 and 1999, the rate of antibiotic prescribing for acute bronchitis was between 60% and 80% in the United States.2 During the past 15 years, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has led efforts to decrease antibiotic prescribing for acute bronchitis.3,4 Since 2005, a Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS) measure has stated that the antibiotic prescribing rate for acute bronchitis should be zero.5
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