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Effect of an educational program on the treatment of RSV lower-respiratory-tract infection

Effect of an educational program on the treatment of RSV lower-respiratory-tract infection

American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy 60(8): 759-767

The effectiveness and outcomes of an educational program to decrease ribavirin and antimicrobial prescribing rates and associated costs for patients with respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) lower-respiratory-tract infection are described. An educational program on the appropriate treatment for RSV infections was conducted for attending physicians and medical residents with multiple methods and forums during the 1994-95 RSV season. A retrospective chart review of 2396 patients admitted to a pediatric teaching hospital from July 1, 1991, through June 30, 1998, was conducted to measure the frequencies of ribavirin and antimicrobial prescribing in infants and young children hospitalized with RSV lower-respiratory-tract infection. The results before and after the educational program were compared. Ribavirin was prescribed for 37.9% of patients before the program, and only 9.0% received it afterward (p < 0.001). Before the program, 24.8% of patients with no risk factors received ribavirin compared with 1.6% of patients after the program (p < 0.001). However, more patients with three or more risk factors for morbidity and mortality received ribavirin before the program than afterward (97.8% versus 39.2%, respectively). A broad-spectrum i.v. antimicrobial was prescribed for 85.6% of patients before the program while 60.6% received one afterward (p < 0.001). The cost savings for ribavirin and antimicrobials during the three-year period after the program were $1,235,484 and $34,839, respectively. Hospital length of stay decreased from 5.6 to 5.1 days (p < 0.001). No readmissions occurred during the study period. A multifaceted educational intervention program may have been somewhat effective in modifying physician's prescribing habits for the treatment of RSV lower-respiratory-tract infection.

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Accession: 048867980

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PMID: 12749162

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