5 questions on antibiotic susceptibility testing with Accelerate Diagnostics

Preliminary data indicate the rate of sepsis mortality related to overall patient deaths is dropping at University Health Care System in Augusta, Ga. So what are they doing differently?

Accelerate Diagnostics recently published a white paper with Becker's Hospital Review detailing the implementation of their Accelerate Pheno system at University Health Care System. Becker's caught up with Levi Kirwin, the Director of Commercial Marketing for Accelerate Diagnostics, to learn more about the use case.

Editor's note: Responses were lightly edited for style and clarity.

Question: What separates the Accelerate Pheno™ system from other fast diagnostic tests? 

Levi Kirwin: It provides complete antibiotic susceptibilities direct from positive blood culture, reducing the time to help clinicians make sepsis interventions by an average of 40 hours per patient.

Q: UHCS experienced a full day reduction of antibiotic therapy per patient encounter after implementing the Accelerate Pheno™ system; how does this reduction impact the patient and how did it impact the hospital? 

LK: Reducing days of antibiotic therapy has been shown to improve outcomes. It correlates with reduction in incidence of Clostridium difficile infection, acute kidney injury and ototoxicity; this also reduces costs related to antibiotic therapy and bed days

Q: What sorts of teams does a provider need to have in place to ensure effective implementation of the Accelerate Pheno™ system? 

LK: An antimicrobial stewardship team should include strong sponsorship from C-suite and/or quality leadership, an infectious diseases physician, infectious diseases-trained pharmacist(s), and include stakeholders from critical care, infection prevention and the laboratory.

Q: How does the Accelerate Pheno™ system interact with an EMR such as Epic? 

LK: Results are electronically transmitted directly into the EHR, with the capability to alert intensivists and hospitalists to critical results, such as the recommended antibiotic treatment for multidrug resistant organisms involved in sepsis.

Q: What kind of training do clinicians require to implement this system? 

LK: Antibiotic stewardship teams, in concert with clinical decision support from the vendor, will frequently lead trainings with intensivists/hospitalists on grand rounds, or in-service, to prepare clinicians to intervene using fast susceptibility results without delay.

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