Share the article

Rational use  –  Health care

Core components

Find here core components for work to promote rational use (stewardship) of antibiotics in different health care settings.

Rational use activities should take place at all levels of care (hospital, community/primary/outpatient care, and long-term care). Depending on the setting, different components may be relevant.

Core components specific for rational antibiotic use efforts in health care settings in low- and middle-income countries have been outlined by the WHO. These are stratified on resource requirement and are categorized into:

  • Leadership commitment (for example dedicated financial support)
  • Accountability and responsibility (for example clearly defined collaboration between the antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) and infection prevention and control (IPC) programmes, and having a multidisciplinary AMS leadership committee in place)
  • AMS actions (for example up-to-date standard treatment guidelines, regular AMS team review/audit of specified antibiotic therapy etc)
  • Education and training
  • Monitoring and surveillance (for example of appropriateness of antibiotic use, resistance rates of key bacteria etc)
  • Reporting and feedback

Diagnostics

Diagnostics are used to determine what disease a patient is afflicted by, and in the case of infectious diseases what is causing the disease. It is the clinical assessment of symptoms and results from diagnostic tests made by the healthcare provider. This information is then used to determine what the appropriate therapy is: for example a specific antibiotic, other medicines or bed rest. Rational use programs are dependent on good diagnostics, i.e. a well-educated health workers and access to relevant diagnostic tests.

Core components from different organizations and research groups are collected below.

How to initiate or strengthen work to implement the core components is covered in Set up a program. Possible strategies and actions to include can be found in Interventions.

Selected Resources

Resource Description
Antimicrobial stewardship programmes in health-care facilities in low- and middle-income countries: A WHO practical toolkit Report from WHO. Contains recommendations and how-to guidance for setting up and implementing antimicrobial stewardship. Specifies core elements for antimicrobial stewardship programmes on both national and facility level. Available in English, Arabic, Russian, French and Spanish. Low- and middle-income countries.
Promoting Rational Use of Medicines: Core Components Framework. Core components to promote the rational use of medicines at the healthcare facility and national level. WHO document, available in English, French and Spanish. Global
Core Elements of Human Antibiotic Stewardship Programs in Resource-Limited Settings: National and Hospital Levels Framework for implementation of antibiotic stewardship programs in resource-limited settings from the US CDC. It takes a tiered approach and covers a range of activities that a government or individual facility can implement based on the resources available. (PDF, 3MB). Resource-limited settings.
Global core standards for hospital antimicrobial stewardship programs, international perspectives and future directions Report from Leading Health Systems Network and CDDEP suggesting standards for rational use programs in hospitals. Includes checklists (also available in Spanish, Portuguese and Chinese) for hospital programs and identifies barriers to implementation with possible measures to overcome them. While overlapping with core components proposed by CDC and others, the checklists are designed to be applicable also in low-resource settings. Global
Developing core elements and checklist items for global hospital antimicrobial stewardship programmes: a consensus approach Journal article that suggests global core elements of antibiotic stewardship programs, including checklist items, to be in place in all hospitals. Aims to facilitate the development of national guidelines as well as adoption by healthcare facilities across the world, regardless of resource availability. Global
Core Elements of Hospital Antibiotic Stewardship Programs Framework. Lists and describes core elements of stewardship programs in hospitals, such as leadership, accountability, drug expertise, action, tracking, reporting and education. Developed by the CDC (USA). The core elements have also been adapted for Outpatient Antibiotic Stewardship as well as for Nursing homes.

More from "Health care"

1.
World Health Organization - WHO. Promoting Rational Use of Medicines: Core Components - WHO Policy Perspectives on Medicines, No. 005, September 2002 [Internet]. 2002 [cited 2016 Mar 16]. Available from: https://apps.who.int/iris/handle/10665/67438
1.
WHO. Antimicrobial stewardship programmes in health-care facilities in low- and middle-income countries: A WHO practical toolkit [Internet]. 2019. Available from: https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/9789241515481
1.
Pombo MHR, Gandra S, Thompson D, Lamkang AS, Pulcini C, Laxminarayan R. Global core standards for hospital antimicrobial stewardship programs, international perspectives and future directions [Internet]. 2018. Available from: https://www.leadinghealthsystemsnetwork.org/research
1.
Implementation Resources | Antibiotic Use | CDC [Internet]. 2018 [cited 2018 Oct 8]. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/antibiotic-use/healthcare/implementation.html
1.
Pulcini C, Binda F, Lamkang AS, Trett A, Charani E, Goff DA, et al. Developing core elements and checklist items for global hospital antimicrobial stewardship programmes: a consensus approach. Clinical Microbiology and Infection [Internet]. 2018 Apr 3 [cited 2018 May 14];0(0). Available from: https://www.clinicalmicrobiologyandinfection.com/article/S1198-743X(18)30295-7/fulltext
1.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - CDC. Core Elements of Hospital Antibiotic Stewardship Programs [Internet]. National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases; 2014 [cited 2014 Aug 20]. Available from: http://www.cdc.gov/getsmart/healthcare/implementation/core-elements.html