The use of antibiotics among Medicare beneficiaries varies across regions, after controlling for differences in patient characteristics, reveals a new study.
These regional differences did not seem to be explained simply by differences in the prevalence of underlying conditions, because regions with high use of antibiotics often had lower rates of bacterial pneumonia diagnosis.
Antibiotic use rates were highest in the South (21.4% per quarter) and lowest in the West (17.4% per quarter).
For details to see Zhang et al. (2012). Geographic variation in outpatient antibiotic prescribing among older adults. Archives of Internal Medicine, 172(19), 1465-1471.