Saturday, January 30, 2016

The Bedside Nurse, Antimicrobial Stewardship and Infection Prevention

This is an intriguing read in Clinical Infectious Diseases, one that recognizes the role of he staff nurse in antimicrobial stewardship. As stated in the paper, nurses are antibiotic first responders, central communicators, coordinators of care, as well as 24-hour monitors of patient status, safety, and response to antibiotic therapy-  their role as antimicrobial stewards seems self evident. 

Why stop there?

In essence, nursing staff are the champions of infection prevention. Nurses have the greatest contact with patients, almost uniformly wash their hands more than physicians and are major drivers of infection prevention best practices including central line checklists, urinary catheter discontinuation, head of bed elevation, and chlorhexidine patient bathing, to name a few.

Without nursing involvement, patient safety falters.

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