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US survey highlights education to reach optimal antimicrobial prescribing

The objective of the online study published in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology was to identify opportunities for education and other interventions to optimize antibiotic prescribing practices. The survey for antimicrobial prescribers was administered at five acute care hospitals within a hospital network in New York in 2015. Knowledge gaps were identified through case-based questions. 32 % of respondents "usually" or "always" liked to use the most broad-spectrum antibiotics possible, and 29 % chose an unnecessarily broad-spectrum antibiotic for treating Escherichia coli urinary tract infection.

The study also indicates that 45 % of respondents believed they had not received adequate training regarding antimicrobial prescribing and 23 % said they were unaware of local web-based empiric treatment guidelines. Majority of respondents agreed that antimicrobial resistance is a problem and antimicrobial stewardship programs can reduce resistance and improve patient care and safety. Study concluded that tailor made education regarding antimicrobial stewardship was desired.


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