One-fifth of VA patients prescribed antibiotics at hospital discharge

Nearly 20 percent of veterans received an oral antibiotic at hospital discharge from VA facilities, according to a study published in Clinical Microbiology and Infection.

Researchers examined national administrative data to identify all acute-care admissions from 2014 to 2016 within the Veterans Health Administration. They assessed days of antibiotic therapy while in the hospital as well as oral antibiotics dispensed at discharge.

Of 1.68 million acute-care admissions at 122 VA hospitals, 335,369 (or 19.9 percent) were prescribed an oral antibiotic at discharge. Fluoroquinolones were most commonly prescribed, accounting for 38.3 percent of all antibiotics prescribed.

Thirty-nine percent of the duration of antibiotic exposure occurred after discharge.

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