J Pharm Bioallied Sci. 2020 Oct-Dec;12(4):369-380. doi: 10.4103/jpbs.JPBS_311_19. Epub 2020 Oct 8.
The overuse of antibiotics has led to various healthcare problems such as the emergence of resistance in infectious microbes and mortality due to antibiotic resistant healthcare associated infections (HAIs). An antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) program is the set of interventions used worldwide to enhance the rational use of antibiotics especially for the hospitalized patients. This review aimed to describe the characteristics of the implemented AMS programs in various hospitals of the world mainly focusing on the interventions and patients outcomes. The literature about AMS program was searched through various databases such as PubMed, Google Scholar, Science Direct, Cochran Library, Ovid (Medline), Web of Science and Scopus. In this review the literature pertaining to the AMS programs for hospitalized patients is sorted on the basis of various interventions that are categorized as formulary restriction (pre-authorization), guideline development, clinical pathway development, educative interventions and prospective audit. Moreover a clear emphasis is laid on the patient outcomes obtained as a result of these interventions namely the infection control, drop in readmission rate, mortality control, resistance control and the control of an overall cost of antibiotic treatment obtained mainly by curbing the overuse of antibiotics within the hospital wards. AMS program is an efficient strategy of pharmacovigilance to rationalize the antimicrobial practice for hospitalized patients as it prevents the misuse of antibiotics, which ultimately retards the health threatening effects of various antibiotics.