St. Francis Medical Center, a member of Prime Healthcare, received Honor Roll Designation with Bronze Status from the California Department of Public Health Hospital-Associated Infections Antimicrobial Stewardship Program (CDPH HAI ASP). CDPH HAI ASP promotes optimal use of antimicrobials, including antibiotics, to prevent the development of antimicrobial-resistant bacteria. Honor roll-designated facilities like St. Francis are recognized for having top performing antimicrobial stewardship programs that meet or exceed national ASP guidelines, demonstrate positive outcomes, and engage active participation across their healthcare team.
St. Francis Medical Center’s ASP program is led by the hospital’s pharmacy director Roochit Patel, Pharm.D, and Infectious Disease physician Hugh Fulmer, MD. Patel said, “Prompted by the commitment of our senior management, Pharmacy leadership, and Infectious Disease physicians to improving patient care and outcomes, St. Francis took a proactive approach to implementing an ASP in 2011, even before it was required by the State. Our being named to the CDPH Honor Roll is a public acknowledgment of our healthcare team’s ongoing commitment to promoting the appropriate use of antibiotics and to preventing the proliferation of antibiotic resistance organisms.”
Antimicrobial resistance can cause serious complications for people who are sick. It can lead to limited or ineffective treatment options, increasing the risk of severe and extended illness and even death. This is in addition to creating lengthy hospital stays and increased medical costs.
According to a report by the Centers for Disease Control, Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2019 (cdc.gov/drugresistance/pdf/threats-report/2019-ar-threats-report-508.pdf), more than 2.8 million antimicrobial-resistant infections occur in the U.S. each year, and more than 35,000 people die as a result.
With these statistics in mind, Patel said, “This underscores the importance of hospitals effecting robust ASPs with a process for monitoring the judicious use of antibiotics and outcomes.”
As a CDPH HAI ASP honor roll designee, St. Francis demonstrated the strength of its program, having successfully completed the rigorous review process comprising three phases: 1) documentation and evaluation of core elements, 2) outcomes and community engagement; and 3) overall program quality and impact. The hospital’s designation is for a three-year period and will expire in 2026.
Patel said, “The ASP honor roll designation acknowledges the hospital’s leadership support through the commitment of required resources, including a dedicated pharmacist and an Infectious Disease physician champion. It affirms our dedication to preventing the emergence of antimicrobial organisms and the tireless hard work of collaborating physicians and staff across all disciplines. Together we can further our shared goal of promoting appropriate antibiotic use, decreasing costs, and enhancing patient outcomes.”
Members of the ASP Committee at St. Francis extend their thanks to the doctors and staff across the hospital for their commitment to preventing antimicrobial resistance and improving patient outcomes.