Effective stewardship: less antibiotic use and more hand hygiene

Rossana Rosa (bio below) writes a guest post, reflecting on this recent review and meta-analysis on the effectiveness of antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) programmes…

The first reports on the effects of Antimicrobial Stewardship Programmess date back to the mid-90s, and the interest in them has taken off in the past decade.

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Trends in US antibiotic use: we’re creating a monster!

Always great to see infection-related data in the top medical journals, like the recent overview of antibiotic use in the US published recently in JAMA Internal Medicine. There’s good news and bad news in the article: overall use of antibiotics in data from 300 US hospitals did not increase between 2006 and 2012. However, the use of key broad spectrum agents did increase significantly, including the carbapenems. I am sure that many of these uses of ‘top shelf’ agents is indicated by the resistance patterns of the organisms being treated, but the net effect is perpetuating the antibiotic-resistant monster! Continue reading

Cross-specialty engagement with antimicrobial stewardship

Guest blogger Dr Tim Rawson (bio below) writes…

With antimicrobial resistance taking its place alongside climate change on the global political agenda, the role of antimicrobial stewardship in healthcare has come to the forefront. Being a good steward of antibiotics goes beyond simply possessing the technical ability to maintain the effectiveness of antimicrobials. It requires an understanding of why we all, as healthcare providers, should practice stewardship and an ability to confront many of the social and behavioural barriers preventing good practice. Whilst the infection community and some policy makers are now highly engaged with antimicrobial resistance, there is very little evidence to support engagement with AMS-AMR within other clinical specialties.

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