The efforts, known as antimicrobial stewardship programs, team top pharmacists, infectious-disease specialists and microbiologists. The groups monitor the use of a hospital's antibiotics and restrict prescriptions of specific drugs when they become less effective at fighting infections. The heightened vigilance comes as the federal Medicare program plans to begin refusing to pay hospitals to treat preventable infections that patients contract while under the facilities' care.Click here to access (sub. req.)
Some VHA member hospitals are working with the University of Florida in Gainesville, which offers a free program to analyze a hospital's patterns of drug resistance and compares these with regional, state or national benchmarks. The program has been used by about 400 hospitals, according to its developer, John Gums, a professor of pharmacy and medicine, who has financed the program with grants from pharmaceutical companies.
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
The fight against superbugs
From the Wall Street Journal article: