Pharmacist-Driven Implementation of Outpatient Antibiotic Prescribing Algorithms Improves Guideline Adherence in the Emergency Department

Link to article at PubMed

Stoll K, et al. J Pharm Pract 2020.


BACKGROUND: Inappropriate prescribing of antibiotics has been identified as the most important modifiable risk factor for antimicrobial resistance.

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this project was to improve guideline adherence and promote optimal use of outpatient antibiotics in the emergency department (ED).

METHODS: Prescribing algorithms for community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), skin and soft tissue infections (SSTI), and urinary tract infections (UTI) were developed to integrate clinical practice guideline recommendations with local ED antibiogram data. Outcomes were evaluated through chart review of patients prescribed outpatient antibiotics by ED providers. The primary outcome was adherence to clinical practice guidelines, defined as the selection of an appropriate antibiotic agent, dose, and duration of therapy for each patient discharged.

RESULTS: When compared to patients discharged from the ED prior to algorithm implementation (N = 325), the post-implementation group (N = 353) received more antibiotic prescriptions that were completely guideline adherent (61.5% vs 11.7%, P < .00001). Post-implementation discharge orders demonstrated improvement in the selection of an appropriate agent (87.3% vs 45.5%, P < .00001), dose (91.5% vs 77.2%, P < .00001), and duration of therapy (71.1% vs 39.1%, P < .01). Additionally, fluoroquinolone prescribing rates were reduced (2.3% vs 12.3%, P < .00001). A reduction in all-cause 30-day returns to the ED or urgent care was observed (15.3% vs 21.5%, P = .036).

CONCLUSION: Pharmacist-driven implementation of antibiotic prescribing algorithms improved guideline adherence in the outpatient treatment of CAP, SSTI, and UTI.

PMID:32552406 | DOI:10.1177/0897190020930979

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