Guidance GP: An antimicrobial stewardship program for general practice
In 2017, over 4 in 10 Australians had at least one antimicrobial agent dispensed by a pharmacist. Many of these are being used for conditions that don’t always require antimicrobial treatment, like upper respiratory tract infections. This is of concern, as prescription of antimicrobial agents like antibiotics can result in an increased risk of antimicrobial resistance (which means that antibiotics might not work when required) and put people at risk of side effects, like diarrhoea and rash, without any benefit. It is also important that people receive antibiotics when they do need them, at the right dose and for the right length of time. There has been increased recognition of the need for antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) in the general practice setting. AMS refers to strategies that promote optimal antimicrobial prescribing.
In this project, we will develop, implement and evaluate a pilot AMS quality improvement program called Guidance GP. Guidance GP consists of audits of antimicrobial prescribing, feedback reports to general practices, education webinar, access to prescribing guidelines and in-practice support for quality improvement. It is hoped that this project will assist general practices to optimise antimicrobial prescribing, inform the ongoing development of Guidance GP to ensure it meets the needs of general practice and assist in the design of a trial to formally evaluate its effectiveness.
North West Melbourne Primary Health Network
National Centre for Antimicrobial Stewardship
2019 RACGP Foundation Therapeutic Guidelines Ltd Grant
Biezen R, Roberts C, Buising K, Thursky K, Boyle D, Lau P, Clark M, Manski-Nankervis J (2019)
How do general practitioners access guidelines and utilise electronic medical records to make clinical decisions on antibiotic use? Results from an Australian qualitative study BMJ Open 9:e028329.