Belgian antibiotic (AB) policy guidelines discourage the use of ABs in sore throat in otherwise healthy individuals; yet, 35% of all children with sore throat in our pediatric emergency department receive a prescription for ABs.


To identify factors influencing our physician's prescription behavior.


Using a retrospective study, we analyzed all medical records of children younger than 16 years of age diagnosed with sore throat (in 2009 and 2010). We included 1345 files.


Children younger than 5 years of age received an AB prescription more easily (37.8 vs. 27.7%; P=0.0007). Children of White origin received less frequent ABs compared with non-Whites (31.6 vs. 37.8%; P=0.02). More ABs were prescribed during night shifts (38.7 vs. 31.8%; P=0.008). Physicians with a Belgian degree prescribed less frequently compared with those with a Dutch degree (23.4 vs. 46.4%; P

We find several 'practical' factors to have an influence on the AB prescription rate.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-347
Number of pages5
JournalEur J Emerg Med
Issue number5
Early online date2014
Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Research areas

  • Acute sore throat, children, emergency department, Belgian antibiotic, antibiotic policy, hemolytic group A Streptococcus, pediatrics

ID: 2456456