Knowledge, attitudes, and practices regarding antimicrobial use and stewardship among prescribers at acute-care hospitals

Elizabeth Salsgiver, Daniel Bernstein, Matthew S. Simon, Daniel P. Eiras, William Greendyke, Christine J. Kubin, Monica Mehta, Brian Nelson, Angela Loo, Liz G. Ramos, Haomiao Jia, Lisa Saiman, E. Yoko Furuya, David P. Calfee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE To assess antimicrobial prescriber knowledge, attitudes, and practices (KAP) regarding antimicrobial stewardship (AS) and associated barriers to optimal prescribing. DESIGN Cross-sectional survey. SETTING Online survey. PARTICIPANTS A convenience sample of 2,900 US antimicrobial prescribers at 5 acute-care hospitals within a hospital network. INTERVENTION The following characteristics were assessed with an anonymous, online survey in February 2015: Attitudes and practices related to antimicrobial resistance, AS programs, and institutional AS resources; antimicrobial prescribing and AS knowledge; and practices and confidence related to antimicrobial prescribing. RESULTS In total, 402 respondents completed the survey. Knowledge gaps were identified through case-based questions. Some respondents sometimes selected overly broad therapy for the susceptibilities given (29%) and some usually or always preferred using the most broad-spectrum empiric antimicrobials possible (32%). Nearly all (99%) reported reviewing antimicrobial appropriateness at 48-72 hours, but only 55% reported always doing so. Furthermore, 45% of respondents felt that they had not received adequate training regarding antimicrobial prescribing. Some respondents lacked confidence selecting empiric therapy using antibiograms (30%), interpreting susceptibility results (24%), de-escalating therapy (18%), and determining duration of therapy (31%). Postprescription review and feedback (PPRF) was the most commonly cited AS intervention (79%) with potential to improve patient care. CONCLUSIONS Barriers to appropriate antimicrobial selection and de-escalation of antimicrobial therapy were identified among front-line prescribers in acute-care hospitals. Prescribers desired more AS-related education and identified PPRF as the most helpful AS intervention to improve patient care. Educational interventions should be preceded by and tailored to local assessment of educational needs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)316-322
Number of pages7
JournalInfection Control and Hospital Epidemiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes


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