Antibiotic Stewardship: The right antibiotic. The right dose. The right duration. The right time.

Antibiotic stewardship refers to a set of commitments and actions designed to optimize the treatment of bacterial infections while reducing the adverse events associated with antibiotic use. Any action to improve antibiotic use is expected to reduce adverse events, prevent emergence of resistance and lead to better outcomes for patients and residents.

Antibiotic stewardship is important in nursing homes because it helps to reduce the spread of antibiotic-resistant infections. Antibiotic resistance is a growing problem globally and it can be particularly prevalent in nursing homes due to the close living quarters and high frequency of residents with weakened immune systems.

Stephanie Meduna, RN, BSN, and Jennifer Everson, RN, BSN, MHA, CPHQ, quality improvement advisors with Great Plains Quality Innovation Network, developed this 12 minute training video to highlight the Core Elements of Antibiotic Stewardship in nursing homes.

Watch the Video

Jen Everson

“The Antibiotic Stewardship Program presentation includes strategies that nursing homes can implement to be good stewards of antibiotics. It’s so important for nursing homes to improve the use of antibiotics to protect their residents and reduce antibiotic resistance. We encourage you to take the time to review this training video and share with your team,” shared Everson. (pictured)

The overuse of antibiotics can contribute to the development of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria. This means that when residents of nursing homes become infected with these bacteria, they can be difficult to treat with the usual antibiotics. This can lead to prolonged illness, increased healthcare costs and even death. Antibiotic stewardship programs in nursing homes aim to improve the appropriate use of antibiotics by promoting the appropriate selection, dosing, and duration of antibiotics. This helps to reduce the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and also helps to improve patient outcomes by ensuring that residents receive the most effective treatment for their infections.

Watch this training video for information and resources to ensure the responsible use of antibiotics, improve resident outcomes and reduce the spread of antibiotic-resistant infections.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published a final rule titled Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Reform of Requirements for Long-Term Care Facilities. The final rule requires an antibiotic stewardship program that includes antibiotic use protocols and systems for monitoring antibiotic use and recording incidents identified under the facility’s infection prevention and control program (IPCP) and the corrective actions taken by the facility.