The use of antibiotics reduced


According to the Institute for Public Health (Folkehelseinstituttet) the use of antibiotics in Norway is decreasing.

The sales of Antibiotics in Norway are decreased by 13.5 percent, a report on drug consumption in Norway for the period 2012-2016, shows. Still, it is still a long way to go before national goals are achieved, says the Institute for Public Health (FHI) in a press release.

The decline in 2016 alone was almost 4 percent. This emphasises a trend of lower consumption that we have seen in recent years. Health authorities’ aim is that antibiotics should be reduced by 30 percent from 2012 to the end of 2020.

– The decline in sales figures for antibiotics is once again good news, but there is still a long way to go in achieving the goals for reduction, says Dr. Martin Steinbakk at FHI.

For antibiotics to be an effective treatment against serious infectious diseases in the future, antibiotics must be used properly and minimized. The slogan ‘Antibiotics – only when needed’ shows that antibiotics should be used only when needed. A reduction in the use of antibiotics will not have negative health effects for the population.

Steinbakk emphasizes that the work is about increasing awareness in not only the general population but also for health care professionals who prescribe medications.

– National guidelines have been prepared for the use of antibiotics. These describe who should get which treatment for what. If the guidelines are followed, the health-specific objectives of the National Strategy against antibiotic resistance 2015-2020 most likely can be reached, says Steinbakk.

Prescription of antibiotics

About 80 percent of all prescription of antibiotics for human use occurs in general practice, 5 percent by dentists, 6 percent in nursing homes and the remainder in hospitals.

A main goal of the government’s strategy against antibiotic resistance is to reduce and optimize the use of antibiotics both in and outside hospitals. Reduced prescription of antibiotics is the main objective in general practice, while reducing the use of broad-spectrum antibiotics is the main objective in the hospitals.

Decline in sales of all antibiotics groups

Drug statistics show that there has been a decline in the use of all groups of antibiotics. The exception is methenamine that strictly speaking is not an antibiotic, but rather an antiseptic used to prevent urinary tract infections, especially in older women.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today