Journal 7, July 2012pages: 415-419
Background: Overuse and abuse of antibiotics is a major cause of microbial resistance. Within the hospital setting such overuse necessitates real-time supervision by infectious diseases (ID) specialists.
Objectives: To evaluate the impact of a recently introduced computerized antibiotic authorization system on the pharmacy budget.
Methods: The study was performed in a 400 bed university hospital. With the new system, antibiotic requests are entered electronically by the ward physician and reviewed within minutes to hours by ID specialists. The feedbacks are seen in the wards and pharmacy. Successive years, one before and the other after introduction of the system, were compared.
Results: During the first year with the new system 7167 antibiotic requests were entered 20% of them were rejected, mainly for improper indication (43% of the rejections). During that year the antibiotic expenditure was reduced by 17%, compared to the previous year (~equal to 200,000 US$), and was against the trend of the last 5 years. Of the 35 antibiotics under the control of the ID team, the use of 7 was probably curtailed by the supervision. Pareto analysis revealed that four drugs constituted > 50% of the pharmacy’s expenses. The mortality rate (per 1000 hospitalization days) during those 2 years fell from 4.0 to 3.8.
Conclusions: Computerized antibiotic control by ID specialists is a feasible cost-saving new modality that may help reduce unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions.