European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases edition:14th location:Prague / Czech Republic date:May 1–4, 2004
In 2002–2003, a pilot project funded the establishment of antibiotic management teams (AMT) and antibiotic managers (AM) in Belgian hospitals. First year activity reports were reviewed to assess the communication methods used for implementing antibiotic policies.
The pilot hospitals (n = 35) had a median number of 654 (from 154 to 1597) beds; 17 were general hospitals, 10 general hospitals with teaching beds and 8 teaching hospitals. Communication methods used for dissemination of antibiotic recommendations within the institution were categorised; 1, 2 and 3 points were granted to passive, active and personalised methods, respectively, and the cumulative sum was used as a score for ranking hospitals.
Communication actors were identified as the AM (sender), guidelines (message) and healthcare staff (receiver). In passive methods, only the sender knows that the message was emitted. These included: mailing (33), intranet (6), internal newsletter (9), e-mailing (2) and posters (1). In active methods, the sender knows that the message was emitted and at least received. These included: information meetings (lectures, courses, staff meetings) (13) and infection ward rounds (11). In personalised methods, the sender knows that the message was emitted, received and understood. These included: individual feedback (6), face to face meeting with AM (18), audit (2) and computer-assisted prescribing (9). Hospitals used an average of 3.6 communication methods (1–8). The mean communication score was of 6.5 points (1–15). General hospitals, general hospitals with teaching structure and teaching hospitals used an average of 3.2, 5 and 3.7 methods with a mean score of 5.8, 6.3 and 8.3, respectively. No difference was seen by hospital size in the number of methods used or communication score.
Advertisement type categorisation of communication methods showed that all hospitals used at least one passive method, 39% used at least one active method and 55% used at least one personalised method. The quality of communication was higher in hospitals with teaching affiliation (P = 0.05).