Antibiotics are one of the most commonly prescribed drugs today. Rational use of antibiotics is extremely important as injudicious use can adversely affect the patient, cause emergence of antibiotic resistance and increase the cost of health care. Prescribing an antibiotic comprises several phases:
i) perception of need - is an antibiotic necessary ?
ii) choice of antibiotic - what is the most appropriate antibiotic ?
iii) choice of regimen : what dose, route, frequency and duration are needed ?
iv) monitoring efficacy : is the treatment effective ?