Outpatient antimicrobial stewardship programs in pediatric institutions in 2020: Status, needs, barriers.

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DOI: 10.1017/ice.2021.416


OBJECTIVE: To assess current resources, interventions, and obstacles of pediatric outpatient antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASP).

DESIGN: Cross-sectional study.

SETTING: Institutions from the Sharing Antimicrobial Reports for Pediatric Stewardship OutPatient collaborative (SHARPS-OP).

PARTICIPANTS: Antimicrobial stewardship leaders from the above institutions.

METHODS: An investigator-developed survey was deployed online in September 2020 to antimicrobial stewardship leaders in SHARPS-OP institutions. The survey was divided into 4 sections: (1) basic information, (2) status of pediatric outpatient ASP in the institutions including financial support, (3) outpatient ASP interventions undertaken by the institutions, and (4) needs and SHARPS-OP collaborative goals.

RESULTS: Of 56 invited institutions, 45 participated, achieving an 80% response rate. Only 5 sites (11%) had allocated financial support for an outpatient ASP, compared to 42 (95.6%) for their inpatient ASP. The most widely used outpatient ASP interventions included antimicrobial guidance (57.8%), education (46.7%), and quality improvement projects (37.8%). Time was identified as the biggest barrier to expanding outpatient ASPs (91.1%), followed by financial support (53.3%), development of meaningful reports (51.1%), and administrative support (44.4%). Important goals of the collaborative included seeking learning opportunities and developing clear metrics for pediatric outpatient ASP benchmarking. Program needs included securing operational support (35.8%) and strengthening data analysis (31.6%).

CONCLUSIONS: Very few pediatric institutions with robust inpatient ASPs have devoted time and financial support to advance outpatient efforts. To promote appropriate antibiotic prescribing in the outpatient arena, time and resource funding by administrative leaders are necessary to develop a robust, sustainable stewardship infrastructure.

Journal Title

Infection control and hospital epidemiology : the official journal of the Society of Hospital Epidemiologists of America





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MeSH Keywords

Humans; Child; Antimicrobial Stewardship; Outpatients; Cross-Sectional Studies; Anti-Infective Agents; Anti-Bacterial Agents


antibiotic stewardship; collaborative; outpatient antimicrobial stewardship; pediatric; survey

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