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Total duration of antimicrobial therapy resulting from inpatient hospitalization

  • April P. Dyer (a1) (a2), Elizabeth Dodds Ashley (a1) (a2), Deverick J. Anderson (a1) (a2), Christina Sarubbi (a1) (a3), Rebekah Wrenn (a1) (a3), Lauri A. Hicks (a4), Arjun Srinivasan (a4) and Rebekah W. Moehring (a1) (a2)...



To assess the feasibility of electronic data capture of postdischarge durations and evaluate total durations of antimicrobial exposure related to inpatient hospital stays.


Multicenter, retrospective cohort study.


Two community hospitals and 1 academic medical center.


Hospitalized patients who received ≥1 dose of a systemic antimicrobial agent.


We collected and reviewed electronic data on inpatient and discharge antimicrobial prescribing from April to September 2016 in 3 pilot hospitals. Inpatient antimicrobial use was obtained from electronic medication administration records. Postdischarge antimicrobial use was calculated from electronic discharge prescriptions. We completed a manual validation to evaluate the ability of electronic prescriptions to capture intended postdischarge antibiotics. Inpatient, postdischarge, and total lengths of therapy (LOT) per admission were calculated to assess durations of antimicrobial therapy attributed to hospitalization.


A total of 45,693 inpatient admissions were evaluated. Antimicrobials were given during 23,447 admissions (51%), and electronic discharge prescriptions were captured in 7,442 admissions (16%). Manual validation revealed incomplete data capture in scenarios in which prescribers avoided the electronic system. The postdischarge LOT among admissions with discharge antimicrobials was median 8 days (range, 1–360) with peaks at 5, 7, 10, and 14 days. Postdischarge days accounted for 38% of antimicrobial exposure days.


Discharge antimicrobial therapy accounted for a large portion of antimicrobial exposure related to inpatient hospital stays. Discharge prescription data can feasibly be captured through electronic prescribing records and may aid in designing stewardship interventions at transitions of care.


Corresponding author

Author for correspondence: April P. Dyer, Email:


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PREVIOUS PRESENTATION. This work was presented as an oral abstract at IDWeek 2017, October 5, 2017, in San Diego, California.



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Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology
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