Social norms reduce over prescription of antibiotics

Social Norms and Health
Intervention Health

Intervention Description

Overprescribing of antibiotics is a global health problem, as it creates antibiotic-resistant bacteria. To reduce prescription rates, researches used behaviorally crafted messages designed to appeal to social norms. Doctors at randomly picked hospitals were told that their practice was in the upper 20% of prescription rates. Doctors who received this message had prescription rates that were 3.3% lower than those who didn’t. This is a very efficient intervention, as there are real gains with almost no costs.