Behavioral change in antibiotic prescribing practice

Antimicrobial stewardship program is an emerging strategy designed to optimize outcomes and reduce the emergence of resistant organisms through the pillars of surveillance, infection control and optimizing the use of antimicrobial therapy. Educating clinicians in the appropriate use of antimicrobials is an essential facet of antimicrobial stewardship.

The best strategies for an antimicrobial stewardship program are not definitively established and are likely to vary based on local culture, policy and routine clinical practice.

Restriction is useful in urgent situations, but because of the reduced effects over time, programs and strategies should be balanced with positive actions.

Since physicians are primarily responsible for the decision to use antibiotics, educating them and changing the attitudes and knowledge that underlie their prescribing behavior are crucial for improving antimicrobial prescription.

The ultimate goal of an antimicrobial stewardship program should be to stimulate a behavioral change in prescribing practice. Education of prescribers is crucial to convince clinicians to use antibiotics judiciously even if it is probably useless if it is not accompanied by other strategies.

Educational interventions should include any attempt to persuade physicians to modify their clinical practice