Background: Antibiotic stewardship programs are necessary to test the appropriateness of local guidelines for empirical antibiotic treatment by audits.
Objectives: To assess whether compliance to local guidelines achieved a higher rate of appropriate antibiotic treatment and reduced morbidity and mortality, and whether infectious disease counseling improved the rate of appropriate treatment.
Methods: Our cohort comprised 294 patients with proven bacteremia. Data were retrieved from medical records including diagnosis, empiric antibiotic treatment, and outcomes.
Results: The empirical treatment was consistent with bacterial susceptibility in 227 patients (77%), and matched in 64% of the time to the first line, and another 24% to the second line of institutional guidelines. A strong correlation was found between appropriate empiric treatment according to bacterial susceptibility and reduced mortality (odds ratio [OR] 0.403, P = 0.007). A similar correlation was found with the choice of appropriate antibiotics according to local guidelines (OR 0.392, P = 0.005). Infectious disease consultation was related to an increase in the rate of appropriateness of treatment according to guidelines (85% vs.76%, P = 0.005). A tendency to increased appropriateness was related to microbial susceptibility (87% vs. 74%, P = 0.07).
Conclusions: In this study, initiation of appropriate empiric antibiotic therapy, according to the hospital's guidelines, was found associated with reduced mortality in patients with bacteremia.