The Cold Standard

A toolkit for using antibiotics wisely in the context of COVID-19 and virtual care.

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The Cold Standard

A toolkit for using antibiotics wisely in the context of COVID-19 and virtual care.

Download PDF

About This Toolkit

The Using Antibiotics Wisely campaign has released the third edition of the Cold Standard toolkit to address the management of respiratory tract infections (RTIs) with considerations of COVID-19 and virtual care. This practical toolkit is intended to support judicious use of antibiotics in the following ways:

  • De-emphasize the role of antibiotics for RTI through public-facing campaign.
  • Standardize practice regarding when patients must be assessed in person to consider need for antibiotics.
  • Increase adoption of the viral prescription that can address patient concerns through structured communication regarding
    RTI diagnosis, symptom management, expected clinical course, and safety net planning.
  • Incorporate delayed prescriptions for cases with diagnostic uncertainty regarding bacterial infection (e.g. acute otitis media).
  • Ensure that, when antibiotics are deemed necessary, the duration does not exceed maximum recommendations.