Global sales of oral antibiotics formulated for children

Grace Li*, Charlotte Jackson, Julia Bielicki, Sally Ellis, Yingfen Hsia, Mike Sharland

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
29 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Objective
To investigate international consumption patterns of child-appropriate oral formulations of antibiotics by formulation type, with a focus on dispersible tablets, using data from a global sales database.

Method
Antibiotic sales data for 2015 covering 74 countries and regional country groups were obtained from the MIDAS® pharmaceutical sales database, which includes samples of pharmacy wholesalers and retailers. The focus was on sales of child-appropriate oral formulations of Access antibiotics in the 2017 World Health Organization’s WHO Model list of essential medicines for children. Sales volumes are expressed using a standard unit (i.e. one tablet, capsule, ampoule or vial or 5 mL of liquid). Sales were analysed by antibiotic, WHO region and antibiotic formulation.

Findings
Globally, 17.7 billion standard units of child-appropriate oral antibiotic formulations were sold in 2015, representing 24% of total antibiotic sales of 74.4 billion units (both oral and parenteral) in the database. The top five child-appropriate Access antibiotics by sales volume were amoxicillin, amoxicillin with clavulanic acid, trimethoprim–sulfamethoxazole, cefalexin and ampicillin. The proportion of the top five sold for use as a syrup varied between 42% and 99%. Dispersible tablets represented only 22% of all child-appropriate oral formulation sales and made up only 15% of sales of 10 selected Access antibiotics on the model list for children.

Conclusion
Globally most child-appropriate oral antibiotics were not sold as dispersible tablets in 2015, as recommended by WHO. There is a clear need for novel solid forms of antibiotics suitable for use in children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)458-466
Number of pages9
JournalBulletin of the World Health Organization
Volume98
Issue number7
Early online date08 May 2020
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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