NICE issues guidance on antibiotics for coughs and colds

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: (Published 25 July 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a1033
  1. Helen Mooney
  1. 1London

    Antibiotics should not be prescribed for common respiratory tract infections, including cough, colds, and sore throats. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued clinical guidelines to GPs telling them not to prescribe antibiotics to patients who have minor respiratory illnesses.

    NICE has advised GPs to tell their patients to rest, take painkillers and fluids, and stay at home instead.

    In England and Wales a quarter of the population visit their GP because of such an infection each year, and they are the cause of 60% …

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