BACKGROUND: Survival from early meningococcal disease might be improved if general practitioners followed guidelines by immediately administering parenteral antibiotics (before hospital referral). METHODS: Structured telephone interviews with 20 GPs who had previously treated meningococcal cases. RESULTS: General practitioners knew guideline recommendations for early management of meningococcal disease: early parenteral antibiotics would be given by about half the GPs entertaining a diagnosis of meningococcal infection. Barriers to immediate treatment were: diagnostic uncertainty, regarding the case as nonurgent, and practising close to a hospital. DISCUSSION: Diagnosing meningococcal disease is difficult in general practice. Early antibiotic administration for suspected cases is appropriate even in close proximity to referral hospitals.
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||Australian Family Physician|
|Publication status||Published - 2005|