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    ASHP offers free program on antimicrobial stewardship

    In response to growing concern among hospital pharmacists, the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) has launched an education program on antibiotic resistance.

    Introduced in June, the ASHP Advantage curriculum on Antimicrobial Stewardship updates pharmacists on ways they can establish stewardship programs in their hospitals. "Using drugs better, coupled with much better infection control, seems to be the only way we might have a shot at overseeing some of this [antibiotic resistance]," said Bob Rapp, PharmD, FCCP, chair of ASHP's Advantage program and professor of pharmacy and surgery emeritus at the University of Kentucky.

    The free online program ( http://www.ashpadvantage.com/stewardship/) can also benefit hospital pharmacists seeking to further their careers. "You see a lot of ads for antimicrobial stewardship pharmacists," Rapp said.

    The Stewardship program features a series of live monthly webinars, during which pharmacists and physicians speak on topics such as "Making the business case for antimicrobial stewardship in your hospital: What is the business plan?" and "Implementing the antimicrobial stewardship program: Opportunities, challenges and best practices."

    The website also features a free downloadable white paper, "A Hospital Pharmacist's Guide to Antimicrobial Stewardship Programs," along with a wide range of resources and articles. The education program is sponsored by a grant from Ortho-McNeil.

    — Christine Blank, Contributing Editor

    Christine Blank
    Contributing Editor Christine Blank is a freelance writer based in Florida.