This study investigated several aspects of antimicrobial stewardship by gathering information from community pharmacists and members of the public. The aim was to identify how community pharmacists implement antimicrobial stewardship guidelines and influence patients on the use of antibiotics. This study required and received approval from the University of Huddersfield Ethics Committee. Information and opinions of community pharmacists in the Kirklees and Calderdale areas, and surrounding local areas, and of members of the public in Huddersfield town centre, were gathered using two different questionnaires. These focused on initiatives regarding antibiotic resistance, development of the competencies required for medicines optimisation and antimicrobial stewardship, patient education by pharmacists, monitoring of antibiotic prescribing and pharmacy access to records. The results obtained were then analysed. The study consisted of 50 participating pharmacists and 100 participating members of the public. It was identified that eight pharmacists had undertaken recent professional development regarding antimicrobial stewardship, 11 had made an Antibiotic Guardian pledge and eight monitored antibiotic prescribing. It was also discovered that, when handing out a prescription for antibiotics, five pharmacists (all of whom work in an independent pharmacy) always questioned the indication and seven always provided extra self-care information. Finally, 92 members of the public selected that they would be comfortable allowing their indication (the condition that the antibiotic is being used to treat) to be provided on prescriptions for antibiotics, and 83 selected that they would be comfortable with pharmacies having access to medical records. This study suggests that increased awareness is necessary of the resources that are available to pharmacists regarding antibiotic resistance initiatives and monitoring of antimicrobial prescribing. In addition, an improvement is required concerning patient education by community pharmacists. Finally, the public should be appropriately educated regarding patient confidentiality and the benefits of pharmacies having access to patient information.
How to CiteHancock L. J. & Mellor C. (2016) “An evaluation of antimicrobial stewardship in community pharmacy”, Fields: journal of Huddersfield student research. 2(1). doi: https://doi.org/10.5920/fields.2016.2123