University of Washington

Department of Rehabilitation Medicine

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Knowledge and Use of Antimicrobial Stewardship Resources by Spinal Cord Injury


Evans CT, Rogers TJ, Burns SP, Lopansri B, Weaver FM



Publication Info:

PM&R, 3(7):619-623


OBJECTIVE: To assess the knowledge and the use of antimicrobial stewardship resources, such as hospital antibiograms and infectious disease consultants, by spinal cord injury or disorder (SCI/D) providers.
DESIGN AND SETTING: Anonymous Internet-based, cross-sectional survey.
PARTICIPANTS: A total of 314 SCI/D physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants who prescribe antibiotics were invited to complete a survey.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASUREMENTS: Knowledge of and behaviors related to antibiograms and infectious disease (ID) consults.
RESULTS: A total of 118 providers (80 physicians, 20 nurse practitioners, 18 physician assistants) completed the survey (37.6% response rate). Approximately one-third of respondents indicated that they did not have access to (11.0%) or were unsure of (28.0%) the existence of facility antibiograms. Half of the providers indicated that they never used antibiograms to determine treatment for their SCI/D patients. Respondent factors associated with viewing facility antibiograms were older age, employment at SCI/D specialty centers, a longer duration since completion of training, and years of SCI/D patient care. Nearly all respondents (95%) indicated that they believed that improving access to antibiotic prescribing data or antibiograms would reduce antibiotic resistance. More than one-third reported that they never or seldom used ID consults.
CONCLUSIONS: A significant portion of SCI/D providers who prescribe antibiotics do not have access to facility antibiograms or are unaware of their existence and thus could not use them for determining antibiotic treatment. Interventions could include formal education of providers on how to access antibiograms and the use of ID physicians as a resource, as well as providing technologic support, such as electronic facility-level antibiograms as part of the medical record system, which can be easily identified if a provider is making a decision on an antibiotic.

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