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Pharmacist involvement in antimicrobial use at rural community hospitals in four Western states.

Stevenson KB, Samore M, Barbera J, Hannah E, Moore JW, Gerberding JL, Houck P. Pharmacist involvement in antimicrobial use at rural community hospitals in four Western states. American journal of health-system pharmacy : AJHP : official journal of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. 2004 Apr 15; 61(8):787-92.

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Abstract:

PURPOSE: Pharmacist involvement in antimicrobial use at small rural hospitals in four Western states was studied. METHODS: Surveys were mailed in July 2000 to hospitals with a daily patient census of < 150 in Idaho, Nevada, Utah, and eastern Washington. RESULTS: Seventy-seven (77%) of 100 hospitals returned completed surveys. Only 5% of the hospitals had onsite pharmacists 24 hours per day. An onsite pharmacist was present for a median of 26 hours per week in hospitals without 24-hour pharmacist coverage (range, 0-116 hr/wk). Many hospitals (71%) had policies for monitoring or controlling antimicrobial use, but only 28% had a system capable of monitoring compliance with such policies. Few hospitals had systems for recommending changes in antimicrobial selection on the basis of susceptibility test results (27%) or for monitoring physician compliance with dosage recommendations by pharmacists (21%). Onsite pharmacist hours were significantly associated with pharmacists being involved in the initial ordering of antibiotics and providing active oversight of antimicrobial use. There was a negative correlation between onsite pharmacist hours and use of third-generation cephalosporins and carbapenems. CONCLUSION: A survey showed that rural hospital pharmacists in four Western states spent relatively little time monitoring and influencing antimicrobial prescribing.





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