Antibiotic Utilization for Respiratory Conditions (AXR)

This measure summarizes data on the percentage of episodes for members 3 months of age and older with a diagnosis of a respiratory condition that resulted in an antibiotic dispensing event. The organization reports three age stratifications for each product line (Commercial, Medicare, Medicaid). The measure considers only episodes that occur in an outpatient setting (outpatient, telephone, observation or ED visit, e-visit or virtual check-in).

Why It Matters

Antibiotics are powerful tools to treat bacterial infections. However, incorrect use can lead to problems such as antibiotic resistance—where drugs designed to kill germs like bacteria no longer work. Nearly 3 million antibiotic-resistant infections are reported each year in the United States, and more than 35,000 people die from those infections, according to the Centers for Disease Control’s 2019 Antibiotic Resistance Threats Report (CDC, 2019). Tracking antibiotic use for respiratory conditions, for which antibiotics often are incorrectly given, can help health plans to monitor antibiotic use to ensure they are being prescribed correctly.


Because this measure is new, data are not yet available to display.


Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2019. Atlanta, GA:
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2019., DOI:

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