Just recently, we told you about Intermountain Healthcare’s efforts to improve its providers’ antibiotic prescribing habits through educational initiatives—and its success in establishing better antibiotic stewardship. Now a study published in the journal Pediatrics reveals similar progress with pediatricians affiliated with NorthShore University HealthSystem and the American Academy of Pediatrics’ practice based-research network. The program that formed the basis of the study involved 19 pediatric practices and reflected 72,723 visits between November 2015 and June 2018. The interventions included an online module on antibiotic prescribing and communication best practices. Prescribers were also counseled on their prescribing habits. By the time the study ended, the likelihood of a pediatrician prescribing an antibiotic for acute respiratory tract infection dropped 7%. Given that this study focused on prescribing antibiotics to children, it likely reflects a reduction in the lifetime risk of antibiotic resistance—and its potentially deadly consequences. As with the Intermountain initiative, it seems evident that simply calling attention to current prescribing guidelines and making educational resources available is sufficient to realize improvements in overall antibiotic prescribing. JUCM just published an article the benefits and consequences of antibiotics for children with acute otitis media. You can read it here, or in our November issue.
Curb Antibiotic Prescribing for Children—Before It’s Too Late