Contemporary Challenges in ID Treatment

Jason Gallagher, PharmD, FCCP, FIDSA, BCPS, explains contemporary challenges facing ID clinicians individually and as a profession.

Segment Description: Jason Gallagher, PharmD, FCCP, FIDSA, BCPS, clinical professor at Temple University College of Pharmacy and editor-in-chief of Contagion®, explains contemporary challenges facing ID clinicians individually and as a profession.

Interview Transcript (modified slightly for readability):

Gallagher: In infectious diseases our challenges are always changing, because the organisms that we treat are always changing, right? As resistance occurs, changes, and emerges in different ways our therapies end up chasing that and sometimes chase that rather slowly compared to how quickly the bacteria themselves are changing.

At least from one standpoint, we're used to change it in ID. One of the challenges we'll be facing in the not too distant future and are already starting to face will be a shortage of ID physicians.

As the match numbers went down, in terms of the number of practitioners going into ID because of issues in reimbursement and so forth, there's just going to be downstream consequences of supply and demand being out of balance. As antimicrobial stewardship has increased and as the need for more ID physicians increases due to increasing resistance, there may be staffing issues that come up with us.

The individual clinicians very well could find themselves being busier.

In terms of issues for the profession overall, challenges in reimbursement are an issue for a discipline that is so cognitively focused.

That's why I think it's important whenever publications come out that show a defined benefit to an ID physician's expertise, such as the consults improving outcomes with candidemia, improving outcomes with Staph aureus bacteremia. More of those studies are needed to continue to show the benefit of having ID physician involvement.