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Background: Antibiotic overuse has led to increasing rates of antibiotic resistant infections and unnecessary antibiotic costs. Clinical pharmacists can play a key role in optimizing appropriate use of antimicrobials and reducing antimicrobial resistance. However, the role of clinical pharmacists in antimicrobial stewardship is new and not well established in Viet Nam. Objective: We evaluated the use of clinical pharmacists for improved antimicrobial prescribing. Methods: We assembled an antibiotic stewardship program (ASP) team consisting of a clinical pharmacist and a specialist in infection prevention and control in a 60-bed medical intensive care unit (MICU) at Hue Central Hospital in central Viet Nam. During January–September 2018, the ASP team collected baseline antibiotic prescribing days of therapy (DOT) for all antibiotics administered in the MICU. Then, from October 2018 through June 2019, the ASP team reviewed daily positive clinical bacterial cultures and susceptibility results for all patients present in the MICU. They reviewed medical charts, including antimicrobial prescriptions, during week days and only if patient was still in the ICU at the time of ASP rounds. The team recommended changes to antibiotic therapy verbally to physicians and left the decision to change antibiotic therapy to their discretion. The ASP team documented whether their recommendations were accepted or rejected. Statistical significance was determined using the Student t test. Results: The ASP team reviewed 160 medical charts and made 169 ASP recommendations: 122 (72%) to continue current treatment; 24 (14%) to monitor drug levels or obtain diagnostic tests; 10 (6%) to discontinue therapy; 6 (4%) to de-escalate therapy; 5 (3%) to adjust doses; and 2 (1%) to broaden therapy. Only 8 of the recommended changes (5%) were declined by the clinicians. The average monthly DOT for all types of antibiotics declined significantly from 2,213 to 1,681 (24% decrease; P = .04). Reductions in DOT for the most common broad-spectrum antibiotics included colistin from 303 to 276 (P = .75); imipenem-cilastatin 434 to 248 (P = .06); doripenem 150 to 144 (P = .85). Piperacillin-tazobactam increased from 122 to 142 (P = 0.75). Conclusions: We demonstrated that daily review of cultures and antibiotic use decreased overall antibiotic prescribing. Given that few recommendations included discontinuation of therapy, ASP rounds likely raised awareness for clinicians to optimize antibiotic use.
This article offers a critical analysis of the human rights system established by ASEAN. It first investigates concrete evidence of the system’s ineffectiveness by comparing the cases of Myanmar and Thailand, which illustrate ASEAN’s failure to address human rights violations both before and after the creation of the ASEAN system. It then examines the substantive and procedural limitations of the ASEAN human rights instruments and mechanisms. Specifically, while restrictions on rights and freedoms contained in the instruments undermine the universality of human rights, ASEAN’s mechanisms lack independence and offer only weak protection mandates to address rights violations. In addition, the absence of a judicial body to hear complaints and issue binding remedies makes the system incomplete. The article recommends the creation of an ASEAN court of human rights and suggests changes to the existing instruments and mechanisms that might accommodate the new court.
To examine the effect of community-based nutrition education intervention on calcium intake and bone mass in Vietnamese postmenopausal women.
A controlled trial was conducted in two groups as intervention and control. The intervention group was given nutrition education during 18 months to improve calcium intake, while the control subjects had the usual diet. Calcium intake and bone mass were evaluated every 6 months. Bone mass was assessed by speed of sound (SOS) at calcaneus, referred to as quantitative ultrasound measurement. Anthropometric indices and serum parathyroid hormone (PTH) were determined at baseline and at the end of intervention.
Two rural communes of Hai Duong province located in the Red River Delta in Vietnam.
A total of 140 women aged 55–65 years, who were more than 5 years postmenopausal and with low calcium intake (<400 mg/d), were recruited. After 18 months of intervention, 108 women completed the study.
Calcium intake in the intervention group had increased significantly (P < 0·01) while it had no significant changes in controls. SOS values were not changed significantly in the intervention subjects while it decreased significantly by 0·5 % in the controls (P < 0·01). The intervention led to a decrease in serum PTH by 12 % (P < 0·01). In the controls, there was an increase in serum PTH by 32 % (P < 0·001).
Nutrition education intervention was effective in improving calcium intake and retarding bone loss in the studied subjects.
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