6 findings on antibiotic stewardship programs at US hospitals

Small-and medium-sized U.S. hospitals are less likely to feature high-performing antibiotic stewardship programs, according to a survey conducted by Vizient and Virginia Commonwealth University Health in Richmond.

The survey, conducted in April and May 2016, included responses from 211 Vizient member organizations.

Here are six findings:

1. Only 34 percent of the respondents were in compliance with all of the CDC's Core Elements of Hospital Antibiotic Stewardship Programs, part of national guidelines for antibiotic stewardship programs.

2. Seventeen percent of hospitals reported having no formal antibiotic program.

3. Organizations with high-performing antibiotic stewardship program included the following characteristics:

●    Eighty-nine percent provided formal infectious disease training to staff
●    Eighty-two percent were led by organizations connected to a health system
●    Seventy-six percent compensated physicians for participating

4. Academic medical centers were more likely to have a high-performing antibiotic stewardship program, compared to community hospitals.

5. Medium and small community hospitals accounted for 58 percent of all low-performing antibiotic stewardship programs.

6. Only 25 percent of respondents reported conducting routine antibiotic timeouts.

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