FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 31, 2016
Contact: Kristy Weinshel / kweinshel@shea-online.org / 703-684-1008 

SHEA Applauds Recommendations of Presidential Advisory Council on Combatting Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria

Focused Recommendations Outline Areas for Progress, Collaboration with Federal and Private Sector Stakeholders

ARLINGTON, Va. (March 31, 2016) – Today, the Presidential Advisory Council on Combatting Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria (PACCARB) met and plans to release the report, “Initial Assessment of the National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria,” an in-depth analysis of federal efforts to date and recommendations for continuing national progress related to antibiotic resistance. This comprehensive report uses the assessment completed by the PACCARB work groups to set the stage for future coordinated initiatives by U.S. Federal Agencies and interested private sector partners.

The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA) supports PACCARB’s analysis of successes and future considerations for controlling antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The report is in line with recommendations from SHEA and will further the collective action of SHEA and other stakeholders in supporting safe healthcare for all. A majority of SHEA’s work has focused on programming, education, research and expert guidance related to PACCARB’s Goal 1: Slow the Emergence of Resistant Bacteria and Prevent the Spread of Resistant Bacteria. Specifically, SHEA consistently endorses the development of evidence-based antibiotic stewardship programs positioned to drive change. SHEA develops specific frameworks and recommendations for these strategies, such as the white paper published in Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology (ICHE) entitled, Guidance for the Knowledge and Skills Required for Antimicrobial Stewardship Leaders.
Through its initiatives, SHEA is a leader in the implementation of antibiotic stewardship programs related to human health and fostering related culture change. Similarly, the society promotes ways to expand and train healthcare personnel with appropriate expertise in infectious diseases and healthcare epidemiology. With this preparation, trained healthcare personnel are positioned to serve as leaders in antibiotic stewardship through ongoing specialized stewardship education and mentorship opportunities. Antibiotic stewardship strategies are necessary in every healthcare setting to effect real change across the healthcare continuum.

“I am pleased to see national progress that will drive lasting change on all the different facets of antibiotic resistance,” commented Louise M. Dembry, MD, MS, MBA, president of SHEA. “The President’s Advisory Council provides a roadmap for SHEA and other stakeholders to help fill the gaps to support and build on these efforts in order to operationalize actions that reach frontline healthcare providers and make the aspirational goals of stewardship a reality in every setting.  I would add that the foundation of good antibiotic resistance prevention and control efforts include not only antibiotic stewardship but also solid infection prevention interventions such as hand hygiene, environmental disinfection and careful use of medical devices, to name just a few.  Preventing transmission is part of protecting patients from getting an antibiotic-resistant bacterial infection.”

SHEA looks forward to working with federal partners and all stakeholders to address the recommendations outlined in the PACCARB report to make an impact on improving patient outcomes associated with antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

###

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. SHEA improves patient care and healthcare personnel safety in all healthcare settings through the critical contributions of healthcare epidemiology and improved antibiotic use. 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. Visit SHEA online at www.shea-online.org,www.facebook.com/SHEApreventingHAIs and @SHEA_Epi.