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The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has required healthcare systems and hospitals to rapidly modify standard practice, including antimicrobial stewardship services. Our study examines the impact of COVID-19 on the antimicrobial stewardship pharmacist.
A survey was distributed nationally to all healthcare improvement company members.
Pharmacist participants were mostly leaders of antimicrobial stewardship programs distributed evenly across the United States and representing urban, suburban, and rural health-system practice sites.
Participants reported relative increases in time spent completing tasks related to medication access and preauthorization (300%; P = .018) and administrative meeting time (34%; P = .067) during the COVID-19 pandemic compared to before the pandemic. Time spent rounding, making interventions, performing pharmacokinetic services, and medication reconciliation decreased.
A shift away from clinical activities may negatively affect the utilization of antimicrobials.