Antimicrobials are a shared resource endangered by the rise of bacterial resistance.
Unfortunately, antimicrobial use is often less than ideal and many patients receive these who will not benefit from them. Antimicrobial stewardship is the implementation of process and practices designed to improve antimicrobial use and patient outcomes. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) requires that all hospital and long-term care facilities implement an antibiotic stewardship program. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends these programs utilize experts in improving antimicrobial use to develop and implement their efforts. Unfortunately, there is a shortage of infectious diseases (ID) trained physicians and pharmacists who can assist in such efforts, especially in heavily rural states such as Nebraska. Additionally, rural facilities may lack the resources necessary to effectively implement an antimicrobial stewardship program.
The Nebraska Antimicrobial Stewardship Assessment and Promotion Program (ASAP) is supported by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, Healthcare-Associated Infection Team through a CDC grant. It is closely affiliated with the nationally recognized Antimicrobial Stewardship Program at Nebraska Medicine. The ASAP program employs a full-time ID trained pharmacist, ID trained medical directors plus infection control and research trained nurses, all with extensive experience in establishing and running successful stewardship programs.
The goal of ASAP is to promote the effective use of antimicrobials and improve patient outcomes throughout the state of Nebraska by collaborating with local clinicians, pharmacists, infection preventionists and other health care workers to establish effective antimicrobial stewardship programs. Facilities which participate in ASAP will receive assistance in establishing such a program through a joint partnership where ASAP will assess local antimicrobial stewardship efforts and work with your facility teams to implement a program that meets CMS standards. We will utilize the CDC Core Elements for program development and target improvements in antimicrobial prescribing and a reduction in infections secondary to antimicrobial resistant pathogens, with a specific focus on decreasing C. difficile infections.
Page last reviewed: September 25, 2019