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How Are Antibiotic Stewardship Programs Impacting Antibiotic Resistance?


Lauri A. Hicks, DO, captain, US Public Health Service, director, Office of Antibiotic Stewardship, medical director, Get Smart: Know When Antibiotics Work, Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, discusses how antibiotic stewardship programs are impacting antibiotic resistance.
Interview Transcript (slightly modified for readability)
“I think it is going to be very difficult to predict, at this point, what the impact might be on antibiotic resistance, but I think we can stay united around this mission of improving antibiotic use because this is a problem that is not going away, and we know that we need to continue to improve how antibiotics are being used in order to preserve their effectiveness.
What we know is that there is a lot of engagement both at the federal levels as well as at the local level. We have a lot of health systems that have committed to improving how antibiotics are being used within their own health systems. We’re working very closely with organizations like The Joint Commission, [which] is actually [implementing] a new requirement that will make sure that all hospitals will have antibiotic stewardship programs; it’s going to be a standard that incorporates antibiotic stewardship as one of their requirements.
Going forward, there is no doubt that addressing the problem of antibiotic resistance is going to be an ongoing priority. From that perspective, we want to keep sending the message that we want every single healthcare facility to have an antibiotic stewardship program. When I say healthcare facility I mean hospitals, [and] ideally nursing homes, as well.
In outpatient facilities we want to make sure that every single provider, whether you’re a nurse, you’re a doctor, you’re a nurse practitioner, you’re a physician assistant, is really thinking about how they can make an impact on this problem, and prescribe antibiotics appropriately.”
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