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To evaluate antibiotic prescribing behavior (APB) among physicians with various specialties in five Asian countries.
Survey of antibiotics prescribing behavior in three stages (initial, on-treatment, and de-escalation stages).
Participants included internists, infectious diseases (ID) specialists, hematologists, intensivists, and surgeons. Participants’ characteristics, patterns of APB, and perceptions of antimicrobial stewardship were collected. A multivariate analysis was conducted to evaluate factors associated with appropriate APB.
There were 367 participants. The survey response rate was 82.5% (367/445). For the initial stage, different specialties had different choices for empiric treatment. For the on-treatment stage, if the patient does not respond to empiric treatment, most respondents will step up to broader-spectrum antibiotics (273/367: 74.39%). For the de-escalation stage, the rate of de-escalation was 10%–60% depending on the specialty. Most respondents would de-escalate antibiotics based on guidelines (250/367: 68.12%). De-escalation was mostly reported by ID specialists (66/106: 62.26%). Respondents who reported that they performed laboratory investigations prior to empirical antibiotic prescriptions (aOR = 2.83) were associated with appropriate use, while respondents who reported ID consultation were associated with appropriate antibiotic management for infections not responding to empiric treatment (aOR = 40.87); adherence with national guidelines (aOR = 2.57) was associated with reported successful carbapenem de-escalation.
This study highlights the variation in practices and gaps in appropriate APB on three stages of antibiotic prescription among different specialties. Education on appropriate investigation, partnership with ID specialist, and availability and adherence with national guidelines are critical to help guide appropriate APB among different specialties.
One fundamental strategy to address the public health threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is improved awareness among the public, prescribers, and policy makers with the aim of engaging these groups to act. World Antimicrobial Awareness Week is an opportunity for concerted and consistent communication regarding practical strategies to prevent and mitigate AMR. We highlight 10 ways for antimicrobial stewards to make the most of World Antimicrobial Awareness Week.
Clinical pharmacist-driven antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASPs) have been successfully implemented. Although relevant guidance and several studies suggest that clinical pharmacists be integrated into the current ASP team model, barriers still exist in Asia, primarily due to lack of dedicated personnel and lack of career advancement. We review the effectiveness and the ideal role of clinical pharmacist among ASPs in Asia. Several studies conducted in Asia have shown the effectiveness of pharmacist-led ASP interventions in hospitals and other healthcare settings. However, opportunities to expand the role of clinical pharmacists in ASPs in Asia exist in the implementation of rapid diagnostic test and drug allergies.
In this quasi-experimental study, implementing a procalcitonin and Clinical Pulmonary Infection Score (CPIS) successfully reduced inappropriate antibiotic use among severely-to-critically ill COVID-19 patients, multidrug-resistant organisms, and invasive fungal infections during the intervention period in 2 medical centers. However, this strategy did not improve inappropriate antibiotic use among mildly-to-moderately ill COVID-19 patients.
Hospital construction and renovation activities are the main cause of healthcare-associated fungal outbreaks. Infection control risk assessments (ICRAs) for renovation and construction decrease the risk of healthcare-associated fungal outbreaks, but they are typically not performed in developing countries. We reviewed an outbreak investigation to limit the construction-related fungal infections in a COVID-19 ICU in a resource-limited setting.
Limited data are available on the implementation of an area under the concentration-time curve (AUC)–based dosing protocol with multidisciplinary team (MT) support to improve adherence with vancomycin dosing protocol.
To evaluate the effectiveness of an AUC-based dosing protocol with MT support intervention with adherence to a hospital-wide vancomycin dosing protocol at Thammasat University Hospital.
We conducted a quasi-experimental study in patients who were prescribed intravenous vancomycin. The study was divided into 2 periods; (1) the preintervention period when the vancomycin dosing protocol was already applied in routine practice and (2) the post-intervention period when the implementation of an AUC-based dosing protocol with MT support was added to the existing vancomycin dosing protocol. The primary outcome was the rate of adherence, and the secondary outcomes included acute kidney injury events, vancomycin-related adverse events, and 30-day mortality rate.
In total, 240 patients were enrolled. The most common infections were skin and soft-tissue infections (24.6%) and bacteremia (24.6%). The most common pathogens were coagulase-negative staphylococci (19.6%) and Enterococcus spp (15.4%). Adherence with the vancomycin dosing protocol was significantly higher in the postintervention period (90.8% vs 55%; P ≤ .001). By multivariate analysis, an AUC-based dosing protocol with MT support was the sole predictor for adherence with the vancomycin dosing protocol (adjusted odds ratio, 10.31; 95% confidence interval, 4.54–23.45; P ≤ .001). The 30-day mortality rate was significantly lower during the postintervention period (8.3% vs 20%; P = .015).
AUC-based dosing protocol with MT support significantly improved adherence with vancomycin dosing protocol and was associated with a lower 30-day mortality rate.
Rapid diagnostic testing (RDT) can provide prompt, accurate identification of infectious organisms and be a key component of antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) programs. However, their use is less widespread in Asia Pacific than western countries. Cost can be prohibitive, particularly in less resource-replete settings. A selective approach is required, possibly focusing on the initiation of antimicrobials, for differentiating bacterial versus viral infections and identifying locally relevant tropical diseases. Across Asia Pacific, more data are needed on RDT use within AMS, focusing on the impact on antimicrobial usage, patient morbidity and mortality, and cost effectiveness. Moreover, in the absence of formal guidelines, regional consensus statements to guide clinical practice are warranted. These will provide a regionally relevant definition for RDT; greater consensus on its role in managing infections; advice on implementation and overcoming barriers; and guidance on optimizing human resource capacity. By addressing these issues, the outcomes of AMS programs should improve.
In an intensive care unit, antibiotic heterogeneity led to an increase in antibiotic heterogeneity index (P = .002) and a reduction in carbapenem-resistance Enterobacteriaceae incidence (P = .04). In a general medicine unit with low prevalence of multidrug-resistant organisms, antibiotic heterogeneity index and incidence of multidrug-resistant organisms did not improve.