Table 4

Data on all patients, patients with and without recent symptoms (cough, sore throat, or earache), who did/did not visit their GP for these symptoms, who were/were not prescribed antibiotics and who were/were not satisfied.

Patients with recent symptoms (n = 1083)Patients visiting their GP (n = 250)Patients not visiting their GP (n = 833)Prescribed antibiotics (n = 97)Not prescribed antibiotics (n = 153)Satisfied (n = 188)Not (quite) satisfied (n = 59)
Personal characteristics, %
 Aged ≥65 years17.728.014.627.828.129.820.3
 Female sex57.655.658.255.755.654.859.3
 Level of education (low education)32.243.228.946.441.244.739.0
 Smoker33.530.034.339.224.230.927.1
 Type of insurance (publicly insured)66.870.465.771.169.969.172.9
 Chronic respiratory comorbidity13.427.69.133.024.228.225.4
 Other comorbiditya19.526.017.526.825.525.030.5
 Self-reported health (moderate to poor)28.113.232.68.216.313.811.9
Characteristics of the recent respiratory tract symptoms, %
 Duration of the reported symptoms ≥2 weeks38.477.626.073.979.973.478.0
 Fever present during the reported symptoms11.918.89.835.18.518.620.3
 Urged by others to visit a GP11.740.83.046.437.341.539.0
 Perceived seriousness of the symptoms, mean (SD)b2.1 (1.1)2.8 (1.1)1.8 (0.9)3.0 (1.1)2.7 (1.0)2.7 (1.1)3.0 (1.1)
 Over-the-counter medication50.843.652.951.538.641.552.5
 Views on respiratory tract symptoms and antibiotics, mean (SD)c
 Seriousness3.2 (0.9)3.5 (1.0)3.2 (0.9)3.6 (1.0)3.4 (1.0)3.5 (1.0)3.4 (0.9)
 Self-limiting character3.3 (0.7)3.1 (0.8)3.4 (0.7)3.1 (0.8)3.1 (0.8)3.1 (0.8)3.0 (0.8)
 Need to consult a GP3.8 (0.6)4.0 (0.5)3.8 (0.6)4.0 (0.6)4.0 (0.5)4.0 (0.5)3.8 (0.6)
 Need of antibiotics in cases of fever3.1 (1.0)3.4 (1.1)3.0 (1.0)3.5 (1.0)3.2 (1.2)3.4 (1.1)3.2 (1.1)
 Need of antibiotics in cases of green phlegm3.1 (1.3)3.4 (1.3)3.0 (1.3)3.8 (1.1)3.1 (1.3)3.4 (1.3)3.3 (1.2)
 Need of antibiotics in cases of white spots in the throat3.7 (1.1)3.9 (1.1)3.7 (1.1)----
 Effectiveness of antibiotics3.6 (0.9)3.6 (0.9)3.5 (0.9)3.8 (0.9)3.5 (0.8)3.6 (0.9)3.5 (0.9)
 Side effects of antibiotics3.1 (1.0)3.0 (1.0)3.2 (1.0)2.8 (1.0)3.1 (1.0)3.0 (1.0)2.9 (0.9)
 Aspects of GPs' management, % yes
 GP listened carefully---79.475.278.772.9
 GP examined carefully---62.952.963.337.3
 GP gave information and advice---55.743.148.449.2
 GP prescribed antibiotics---100041.033.9
 Satisfaction with GPs' visit---79.473.81000
  • a Cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus and/or hypertension.

  • b Scale ranged from: 1 (very low) to 5 (very high).

  • c Scale ranged from: 1 (strongly disagree) to 5 (strongly agree).