Efforts to optimize the use of antimicrobial agents, referred to as antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASPs), are increasingly becoming part of the clinical enterprise at big and small hospitals. Such programs aim to achieve the synergistic goals of improving patient outcomes, limiting the unintended consequences of drug resistance and superinfections, and reducing health care expenditures. This article will review the need for antimicrobial stewardship and the key components of setting up a program; then, it will describe the ASP at one medical center to underscore how attention to acceptance by the clinical staff is crucial to changing the culture of antimicrobial use. Although the details may differ for each institution, the foundation of a successful stewardship program is support from hospital leadership and the cooperative interaction among the pharmacy, infectious diseases specialists, and clinical microbiologists.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical