Physician practices in the diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases in home care settings: A questionnaire study

Glob Health Med. 2022 Oct 31;4(5):268-272. doi: 10.35772/ghm.2022.01123.

Abstract

To elucidate the current practices of infectious disease management in home care settings in Japan, we sent a questionnaire to 36 physicians working at 13 clinics that specialize in providing care to patients in their homes or residential care facilities. The questionnaire described three hypothetical scenarios (aspiration pneumonia, pyelonephritis, and neoplastic fever) in older patients with terminal cancer, and 25 respondents answered questions on testing and treatment strategies. Most respondents chose to obtain cultures for aspiration pneumonia (sputum) and for pyelonephritis (urine), although fewer respondents chose to obtain blood cultures. For neoplastic fever, most of respondents elected to continue observation without antibiotic treatment. The most frequently selected antibiotics were cephalosporins and quinolones. The results indicated that most respondents would perform bacterial culture tests before prescribing antibiotics and observe patients when bacterial infections are not suspected. Standardized guidelines are needed to optimize infectious disease management in home care.

Keywords: antibiotic resistance; antimicrobial stewardship; home care service; physician practice pattern.