New antibiotic stewardship playbook meshes NQF, CDC, and Joint Commission guidelines

Accreditation Insider, June 7, 2016

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Released late last month, the National Quality Forum’s (NQF) Antibiotic Stewardship in Acute Care: A Practical Playbook is broken into five core elements focused on proper antibiotic usage: Leadership commitment, accountability, drug expertise, action, and tracking.  Each section contains a list of resources and implementation examples.  

The book was created by experts from the NQF, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Hospital Corporation of America and is based on the CDC’s Core Elements of Hospital Antibiotic Stewardship Programs. The playbook also aligns with the upcoming Joint Commission Antimicrobial Stewardship standard, which will be published this July.   

"We know antibiotics are critically important drugs when we need them," said Arjun Srinivasan, MD, the CDC’s associate director for healthcare-associated infection prevention programs, division of healthcare quality promotion , during the online release of the playbook. "At the same time, we know that they are often times used when they are not needed and sometimes, even when they are needed, they are used incorrectly."

Only 40% of U.S. hospitals have an antibiotic stewardship program and an estimated 30% to 50% of prescribed antibiotics are unnecessary or inappropriate.  In the U.S., drug-resistant diseases cause 23,000 deaths and 2 million illnesses each year. The CDC claims that in addition to gains in patient safety, responsible antibiotic stewardship would save the industry between $27 billion to $42 billion annually.

Read the full article on the NQF playbook at HealthLeaders Media.

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