Antimicrobial resistance has emerged as a significant healthcare quality and patient safety issue in the twenty-first century that, combined with a rapidly dwindling antimicrobial armamentarium, has resulted in a critical threat to the public health of the United States. Antimicrobial stewardship programs optimize antimicrobial use to achieve the best clinical outcomes while minimizing adverse events and limiting selective pressures that drive the emergence of resistance and may also reduce excessive costs attributable to suboptimal antimicrobial use. Therefore, antimicrobial stewardship must be a fiduciary responsibility for all healthcare institutions across the continuum of care. This position statement of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America, the Infectious Diseases Society of America, and the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society of America outlines recommendations for the mandatory implementation of antimicrobial stewardship throughout health care, suggests process and outcome measures to monitor these interventions, and addresses deficiencies in education and research in this field as well as the lack of accurate data on antimicrobial use in the United States.
Authors: Neil Fishman, Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America, Infectious Diseases Society of America and, Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society