Approximately one in three antibiotics prescribed in outpatient settings in the United States are unnecessary, according to recent data published in JAMA.

The CDC reported that the majority of these misused antibiotics are prescribed for viral respiratory conditions such as common colds, bronchitis, sinus and ear infections.

The CDC estimates that 2 million antibiotic-resistance infections, primarily driven by antibiotic use, occur each year and result in 23,000 deaths. Although antibiotic prescribing declined in the U.S. during the 1990s and early 2000s, prescription rates have remained unchanged since 2010, according to CDC researcher Katherine E. Fleming-Dutra, MD, and colleagues.