The impact of an interprofessional mentoring program to advance antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASPs) in selected U.S. hospitals and lessons learned are described.Summary
A seven-step mentoring process with self-assessment, telephone calls, continuing education, a one-day onsite visit, action plan, and outcome data collection and analysis was provided to ASP teams at nine hospitals. Six hospitals completed the program. A significant improvement in the timeliness and appropriateness of i.v. antibiotic therapy (defined as a hang time within one hour after prescriber order entry and broad-spectrum coverage for gram-negative pathogens administered first when combination therapy was used) was observed in patients with sepsis over the 12-month period after implementation of the mentoring program. As a result of requiring hospital administration's participation in the mentoring program, increased funding became available at three hospitals for the microbiology laboratory to provide new rapid diagnostic tests and for pharmacist and physician time to devote to ASP activities. The collaboration and engagement of ASP team members, inclusion of hospital administrators and pharmacy directors in the onsite mentoring visits, and an experienced mentor team with an infectious diseases (ID) physician and ID pharmacist contributed to ASP success. Challenges included insufficient time to collect outcome metrics due to competing hospital priorities and loss of momentum over time.Conclusion
A mentoring program for antimicrobial stewardship provided the perspective that comes from experience. Engagement of hospital administration was a key factor for both developing and sustaining a stewardship program.