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The use of continuous electronic prescribing data to infer trends in antimicrobial consumption and estimate the impact of stewardship interventions in hospitalized children

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

  • S. Channon-Wells
  • M. Kwok
  • J. Booth
  • A. Bamford
  • P. Konstanty
  • J. Hatcher
  • G. Dixon
  • P.J. Diggle
  • J.F. Standing
  • A.D. Irwin
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>30/09/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
Issue number9
Number of pages8
Pages (from-to)2464-2471
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date10/06/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Background: Understanding antimicrobial consumption is essential to mitigate the development of antimicrobial resistance, yet robust data in children are sparse and methodologically limited. Electronic prescribing systems provide an important opportunity to analyse and report antimicrobial consumption in detail. Objectives: We investigated the value of electronic prescribing data from a tertiary children's hospital to report temporal trends in antimicrobial consumption in hospitalized children and compare commonly used metrics of antimicrobial consumption. Methods: Daily measures of antimicrobial consumption [days of therapy (DOT) and DDDs] were derived from the electronic prescribing system between 2010 and 2018. Autoregressive moving-average models were used to infer trends and the estimates were compared with simulated point prevalence surveys (PPSs). Results: More than 1.3 million antimicrobial administrations were analysed. There was significant daily and seasonal variation in overall consumption, which reduced annually by 1.77% (95% CI 0.50% to 3.02%). Relative consumption of meropenem decreased by 6.6% annually (95% CI -3.5% to 15.8%) following the expansion of the hospital antimicrobial stewardship programme. DOT and DDDs exhibited similar trends for most antimicrobials, though inconsistencies were observed where changes to dosage guidelines altered consumption calculation by DDDs, but not DOT. PPS simulations resulted in estimates of change over time, which converged on the model estimates, but with much less precision. Conclusions: Electronic prescribing systems offer significant opportunities to better understand and report antimicrobial consumption in children. This approach to modelling administration data overcomes the limitations of using interval data and dispensary data. It provides substantially more detailed inferences on prescribing patterns and the potential impact of stewardship interventions.