Dr Kirstie Graham attended the Health Services Research conference in London and shared the results of Malaria Consortium’s study into the rational use of antibiotics by community health workers (CHWs) and caregivers in Zambia. Findings show that:
- CHWs are capable of assessing respiratory rate and prescribing appropriate treatment
- Improved tools for assessing respiratory rate would strengthen rational use of antibiotics
- A 3-day rather than 5-day course of antibiotics could improve caregiver adherence, reducing the risk of drug resistance and cost. However, additional evidence is needed to support the use of a short course of antibiotics for pneumonia in Africa.
Also at the conference, Anna Gagliardi mentioned 3 different tools that could be used to help develop and implement guidelines: 1) GRADE, 2) GLIA, and 3) AGREE. Elsewhere, Susan Michie focused on the process for designing effective interventions for behaviour change, with particular reference to The Behaviour Change Wheel to help support and simplify the process of using behaviour change techniques in designing interventions.
The conference covered many wider health systems research topics you can view abstracts here and Dr Graham’s blog about the conference here.