Background Shared decision-making is vital in achieving desired drug therapy goals, especially with antibiotics, in view of the potential long-term reduction in drug resistance. However, shared decision-making is rarely practiced with adolescent patients. Objectives The aim of the study was to identify the effect antibiotic education has on willingness to engage in shared decision-making among adolescents in Malaysia. Setting Participants from secondary schools in Malaysia were enrolled with ethical approval. Method The adolescents answered a validated questionnaire, which included demographics, antibiotic knowledge, attitude towards antibiotic use, and the Control Preference Scale, which measures willingness to engage in shared decision-making. Afterwards, antibiotic education was delivered to participating students. Main outcome measure Knowledge about and attitude toward antibiotics were investigated. Results A total of 510 adolescents participated in the study. Knowledge of antibiotics significantly increased post education (pre 3.2 ± 1.8 vs. post 6.8 ± 2.1, p < 0.001), as did attitude score (pre 3.3 ± 1.7 vs. post 5.4 ± 1.9, p = 0.003). Interestingly, adolescents were less likely to be passively involved in shared decision-making post education (χ = 36.9, df = 2, p < 0.001). Adolescents who were more collaborative in shared decision-making had a significantly higher total antibiotics knowledge and attitude scores compared to those who were not collaborative (p = 0.003). Conclusion The present work demonstrates that antibiotic education improves knowledge, attitude, and willingness to engage in shared decision-making among adolescents. Antibiotic education can therefore be introduced as a strategy to reduce inappropriate antibiotic use.
Adolescents Antibiotic Education Malaysia Shared decision-making
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We would like to acknowledge the Fundamental Research Grant Scheme, Ministry of Higher Education, Malaysia that helped fund the current work.
The current work was funded through the Fundamental Research Grant Scheme, Ministry of Higher Education, Malaysia (FRGS/2/2013/SKK02/UKM/03/2).
Conflicts of interest
The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest.
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