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J Antimicrob Chemother. 2011 Jul;66(7):1609-16. doi: 10.1093/jac/dkr183. Epub 2011 May 19.

Antimicrobial prescribing in European nursing homes.

Author information

1
School of Pharmacy, Queen's University Belfast, 97 Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7BL, Northern Ireland, UK.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

The aim of this study was to investigate antimicrobial prescribing in nursing homes in countries across Europe.

METHODS:

Point prevalence studies were completed in April and November 2009 in 85 nursing homes in 15 European countries and two UK administrations.

RESULTS:

A total of 10,388 and 9430 residents participated in April and November 2009, respectively. The mean prevalence of antimicrobial prescribing in the nursing homes was 6.5% in April and 5.0% in November. The most commonly prescribed antimicrobials were methenamine (17.5%), trimethoprim (11.4%) and co-amoxiclav (11.1%) in April and co-amoxiclav (12.2%), nitrofurantoin (12.2%) and methenamine (11.5%) in November. There was large variation in the overall mean antimicrobial prescribing in the selected nursing homes from each of the contributing countries, ranging from 1.4% in Germany and Latvia to 19.4% in Northern Ireland in April and 1.2% in Latvia to 13.4% in Finland in November. Furthermore, differences in prescribing were apparent within countries with the largest variation evident in nursing homes in Northern Ireland (21.5%) in April and Finland in November (30.1%).

CONCLUSIONS:

This is the first study to investigate antimicrobial prescribing in nursing homes in a large number of European countries. The findings suggest that there is considerable variation in antimicrobial prescribing in nursing homes across and within European countries. Nursing homes provide a significant service to the European community and must be supported in order to optimize antimicrobial use and limit the development of antimicrobial resistance.

PMID:
21596722
DOI:
10.1093/jac/dkr183
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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