One major difference between my country and the USA is that over here, antibiotics are really prescribed sparingly. We are really one of the exceptions – in the majority of countries, antibiotics are used much, much more frequently than here.
Science has been telling us to use antibiotics sparingly for a long time. The problem was public perception. A doctor that refused to prescribe antibiotics was seen as unwilling to help the patient cure a disease. When we made the transition from “antibiotics for everything” to “antibiotics only if there is a real need for them”, some doctors were even literally beaten up badly by angry patient “because they were not doing their job”.
Luckily, scientific insights have since then transcended not only from science to doctors, but also from both science and doctors to patients.
Now, we see that multi-resistance (I don’t know the correct English terminology – I mean bacteria that developed resistance against multiple strains of antibiotics) is a rare event here, while it is a big problem elsewhere.
Can someone from the USA tell why doctors are still prescribing antibiotics so often? They must know the facts by now. Are their unions advising this as a standard measure? Are they afraid to go their own way because American patients demand antibiotics, like it happened here some 20 years ago? Are they afraid to go their own way because they are afraid of lawsuits and huge claims in case one patient happens not to recover?