Send to

Choose Destination
J Antimicrob Chemother. 2003 Nov;52(5):842-8. Epub 2003 Oct 16.

Outcomes of an intervention to improve hospital antibiotic prescribing: interrupted time series with segmented regression analysis.

Author information

Department of Clinical Pharmacology, University of Dundee, Dundee DD1 9SY, Dundee.



To evaluate an intervention to reduce inappropriate use of key antibiotics with interrupted time series analysis.


The intervention is a policy for appropriate use of Alert Antibiotics (carbapenems, glycopeptides, amphotericin, ciprofloxacin, linezolid, piperacillin-tazobactam and third-generation cephalosporins) implemented through concurrent, patient-specific feedback by clinical pharmacists. Statistical significance and effect size were calculated by segmented regression analysis of interrupted time series of drug use and cost for 2 years before and after the intervention started.


Use of Alert Antibiotics increased before the intervention started but decreased steadily for 2 years thereafter. The changes in slope of the time series were 0.27 defined daily doses/100 bed-days per month (95% CI 0.19-0.34) and pound 1908 per month (95% CI pound 1238- pound 2578). The cost of development, dissemination and implementation of the intervention ( pound 20133) was well below the most conservative estimate of the reduction in cost ( pound 133296), which is the lower 95% CI of effect size assuming that cost would not have continued to increase without the intervention. However, if use had continued to increase, the difference between predicted and actual cost of Alert Antibiotics was pound 572448 (95% CI pound 435696- pound 709176) over the 24 months after the intervention started.


Segmented regression analysis of pharmacy stock data is a simple, practical and robust method for measuring the impact of interventions to change prescribing. The Alert Antibiotic Monitoring intervention was associated with significant decreases in total use and cost in the 2 years after the programme was implemented. In our hospital, the value of the data far exceeded the cost of processing and analysis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center