A low-cost stewardship intervention resulted in an increase in delayed antibiotic prescribing for pediatric ear infections across urban, suburban, and rural outpatient pediatric clinics in Colorado, according to a new study. Published in Pediatrics, the research included 69 clinicians at eight practice sites and a 6-month intervention composed of education, audit and feedback, online resources, and content expertise. The rate of delayed antibiotic prescribing increased from 2% at baseline to 21% at the end of the intervention. At five practices reporting later data, delayed prescribing still remained significantly higher than baseline at 3 months and 6 months after the intervention ended.
“Delayed prescribing has been a recommended strategy in the management of acute otitis media for many years with minimal uptake by clinicians,” said Jason G. Newland, MD, MEd, professor of pediatrics at Washington University in St. Louis and St. Louis Children’s Hospital, who was not involved with the research. “This exciting new quality improvement report provides hope that delayed prescribing can be successfully used and hopefully can be disseminated to many more areas.”
The lead author of the study, Holly M. Frost, MD, of Denver Health Medical Center and an assistant professor of pediatrics in the School of Medicine at the University of Colorado in Aurora, will discuss the topic at the 11th Annual International Pediatric Antimicrobial Stewardship Conference, which will be held June 2-4 as a live webinar. The conference is jointly offered by PIDS, St. Louis Children’s Hospital, the Society of Infectious Diseases Pharmacists, and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. For more information, visit the conference website.