Which countries use the most antibiotics?

Joe Myers
Writer, Forum Agenda
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Future of Global Health and Healthcare

With antibiotic resistance and overuse a major global concern, and a significant challenge for global healthcare providers and policy-makers alike, understanding the world’s use of antibiotics is an important step.

The following chart shows the 10 countries with the highest levels of antibiotic use. It’s based on data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and OECD Health Statistics and countries are ranked according to the overall volume of antibiotics prescribed – the daily dose per 1,000 people in 2013 (or the nearest year).

1511B47-antibiotics use oecd turkey greece chart

It’s in Turkey where people take the most antibiotics – 42.2 doses are prescribed per 1,000 people every day. Greece is next with some 10 doses lower at 32.2. The top three is completed by France with 30.1.

The list is entirely comprised of European nations, with Belgium, Italy and Luxembourg all returning figures in excess of 25 doses prescribed per day. Spain, Ireland, Slovakia and Poland complete the top 10.

The OECD average sits at 20.7, with the lowest use of antibiotics found in Chile – just 9.4 doses.

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Author: Joe Myers is a Digital Content Producer at Formative Content.

Image: Pharmaceutical tablets and capsules in foil strips are arranged on a table in this picture illustration taken in Ljubljana September 18, 2013. REUTERS/Srdjan Zivulovic.

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