A modified method for measuring antibiotic use in healthcare settings: Implications for antibiotic stewardship and benchmarking

Mamoon A. Aldeyab, James C. McElnay, Michael G. Scott, William J. Lattyak, Feras W. Darwish Elhajji, Motasem A. Aldiab, Fidelma A. Magee, Geraldine Conlon, Mary P. Kearney

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Objectives: To determine whether adjusting the denominator of the common hospital antibiotic use measurement unit (defined daily doses/100 bed-days) by including age-adjusted comorbidity score (100 bed-days/age-adjusted comorbidity score) would result in more accurate and meaningful assessment of hospital antibiotic use. Methods: The association between the monthly sum of age-adjusted comorbidity and monthly antibiotic use was measured using time-series analysis (January 2008 to June 2012). For the purposes of conducting internal benchmarking, two antibiotic usage datasets were constructed, i.e. 2004-07 (first study period) and 2008-11 (second study period). Monthly antibiotic use was normalized per 100 bed-days and per 100 bed-days/age-adjusted comorbidity score. Results: Results showed that antibiotic use had significant positive relationships with the sum of age-adjusted comorbidity score (P = 0.0004). The results also showed that there was a negative relationship between antibiotic use and (i) alcohol-based hand rub use (P = 0.0370) and (ii) clinical pharmacist activity (P = 0.0031). Normalizing antibiotic use per 100 bed-days contributed to a comparative usage rate of 1.31, i.e. the average antibiotic use during the second period was 31% higher than during the first period. However, normalizing antibiotic use per 100 bed-days per age-adjusted comorbidity score resulted in a comparative usage rate of 0.98, i.e. the average antibiotic use was 2% lower in the second study period. Importantly, the latter comparative usage rate is independent of differences in patient density and case mix characteristics between the two studied populations. Conclusions: The proposed modified antibiotic measure provides an innovative approach to compare variations in antibiotic prescribing while taking account of patient case mix effects.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberdkt458
Pages (from-to)1132-1141
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
Issue number4
Early online date11 Nov 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


Cite this

Aldeyab, M. A., McElnay, J. C., Scott, M. G., Lattyak, W. J., Darwish Elhajji, F. W., Aldiab, M. A., ... Kearney, M. P. (2014). A modified method for measuring antibiotic use in healthcare settings: Implications for antibiotic stewardship and benchmarking. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, 69(4), 1132-1141. [dkt458]. https://doi.org/10.1093/jac/dkt458