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Women should be able to get antibiotics for urinary tract infection without a prescription

BMJ 2015; 351 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h3441 (Published 14 July 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;351:h3441

Re: Women should be able to get antibiotics for urinary tract infection without a prescription

In an Indian context many get drugs over the counter including antibiotics. Urinary tract infections are treated in some villages over the counter with drugs that give temporary relief without treating the cause of the infection.

Many women fall prey to the temporary treatment leading to chronic infection and sometimes leading to renal failure. Such an approach needs to be done through public education, reproductive health and healthcare. This needs to be done through proper education and awareness regarding urinary tract infections that need careful diagnosis and treatment. In many places such help is given by pharmacists or paramedical personnel. The absence of family physician and family practice have resulted in such gross negligence of health in certain villages in India. One such village had many patients ending with renal transplantation. In an Indian context education and primary care facilities including family practitioner are the need of the hour.

Competing interests: No competing interests

19 July 2015
Dhastagir Sultan Sheriff
Professor
Melmaruvathur Adhiparasakthi Institute of Medical Sciences and Research
Melmaruvathur, Chennai