Author: SHEA
Date Published:6/2/2015 10:36:00 AM
Publication Format:
Abstract:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 2, 2015
Contact: Kristy Weinshel / (703) 684-1008 / kweinshel@shea-online.org

SHEA Applauds Administration's Continued Support to Combat Antibiotic Resistance

Organization is committed to spearheading antibiotic stewardship initiatives

ARLINGTON, VA (June 2, 2015) – The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA) strongly supports the ongoing efforts by the Obama Administration to tackle antibiotic resistance with a focus on antibiotic stewardship and will be in attendance at today's Antibiotic Stewardship Forum at the White House. As part of the initiative, SHEA has committed to address needs across all healthcare settings to create, implement and sustain antibiotic stewardship programs through a variety of programming, educational and stakeholder opportunities.

"We are encouraged that the Administration has taken a proactive role in helping find solutions to stem antibiotic resistance, one of the most pressing issues we face in healthcare.  SHEA is ready to do our part in this collaborative effort to address this emerging public health crisis," said Anthony D. Harris, MD, MPH, and President for the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA) and Professor of Epidemiology & Public Health at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

"Overuse and misuse of antibiotics by healthcare professionals contributes significantly to the problem of antibiotic resistance. A key piece is to launch successful antibiotic stewardship programs, which serve as integrated, coordinated efforts to manage antibiotics across the healthcare spectrum, including hospitals, long-term care institutions, and primary care settings.  Leaders of antimicrobial stewardship programs require specific education and training to create programs that are successfully implemented and sustained. Additionally, success lies in creating an overarching culture of understanding where, when and how antibiotics should be used and creating a team available for expert consultation to clarify misunderstandings and direct appropriate use institution-wide."

"Without real action, antibiotic resistance will continue to threaten patients, increase healthcare costs and eliminate valuable drug interventions setting modern medicine back decades. Healthcare systems must invest in making strong antimicrobial stewardship a way to practice and deliver care based on a team-approach," said Harris.

"This is an all-hands-on-deck moment. We all need to unite – public organizations, private entities, academic and research institutions, federal, state and local officials, and patient advocates – to address the issue head on, and implement evidence-based interventions such as stewardship in all clinical settings to improve care and preserve the efficacy of trusted antibiotics."

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SHEA is a professional society representing physicians and other healthcare professionals around the world with expertise and passion in healthcare epidemiology, infection prevention, and antimicrobial stewardship. SHEA's mission is to prevent and control healthcare-associated infections, improve the use of antibiotics in healthcare settings, and advance the field of healthcare epidemiology. The society leads this specialty by promoting science and research, advocating for effective policies, providing high-quality education and training, and developing appropriate guidelines and guidance in practice. SHEA upholds the value and critical contributions of healthcare epidemiology and improved antibiotic use to improve patient care and healthcare worker safety in all healthcare settings. Visit SHEA online at www.shea-online.org, www.facebook.com/SHEApreventingHAIs and @SHEA_Epi.