Introduction: India is a leading consumer of antibiotics; rational use of antibiotics is of prime importance.
Objectives: The majority of the population in India resides in rural areas; hence this study was conducted to capture their knowledge, attitude and practice regarding antibiotic use and antimicrobial resistance.
Patients and Methods: A cross-sectional questionnaire-based survey was conducted among 130 randomly selected general public of rural Mangaluru. Descriptive analysis and Pearson’s chi-square were employed in data analysis.
Results: Adequate knowledge was observed only in 18.5% of the participants. Around 30.8% of participants thought antibiotics killed all germs while 23.8% were of no opinion. Furthermore, 60.8% thought that antibiotics speed up recovery from flu. Only about 23% thought frequent use of antibiotics would make the bacteria stronger and ineffective in the future. A minimal of 16.2% knew that antibiotic resistance is a global problem. About 52.3% preferred to take an antibiotic whenever they had the flu. However, 47% wanted to take it after doctors’ consultation. The study showed that compliance to complete the course was better when a doctor explained the proper use of the prescribed antibiotic. Additionally 31.5% opted for self-medication using the previous prescription and 21.5% took the antibiotics suggested by anyone other than the doctor.
Conclusion: The study findings help re-evaluate the current public awareness activity and provide insight into some of the areas required to be focused on and aid the adequate legislative changes for a better outcome.