Jefferson Health hospitals’ antimicrobial stewardship program earns ‘Gold Steward’ recognition

For the fourth year in a row, Jefferson Health’s three New Jersey hospitals — located in Cherry Hill, Stratford and Washington Township — were recognized as New Jersey Antibiotics Aware Gold Stewards, as part of the New Jersey Department of Health Antimicrobial Stewardship Recognition Program.

In earning Gold Steward recognition, Jefferson Health’s Antimicrobial Stewardship Program is recognized for promoting a higher standard of care in the state of New Jersey, in conjunction with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

“We are proud to be recognized by the NJDOH for our successful and sustainable ASP, which began in November 2014,” Dr. Cindy Hou, infection control officer and medical director of research, said. “The goals of our program include ensuring the appropriate use of antimicrobials to preserve their efficacy; preventing antimicrobial overuse and misuse and associated adverse drug events; optimizing selection, dosage and duration of antimicrobials; as well as decreasing the advent of new resistant organisms and reducing the spread of existing ones.”

Jefferson Health’s multidisciplinary committee oversees its ASP across each of its three New Jersey hospitals. The committee is led by Hou and Nikunj Vyas, infectious diseases clinical pharmacy specialist.

“The key to our success relies on our multidisciplinary ASP approach,” Vyas said. “We have exceptional collaboration and input from the Infectious Diseases, Pharmacy, Nursing, Administration, Informatics and Microbiology teams. With this approach, we have been able to be creative and optimize our resources to improve patients’ lives.”