Published Online: Monday, January 1, 2007

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has launched a pilot project to proactively address antimicrobial resistance. Through the Antimicrobial Use and Resistance (AUR) eSurveillance project, the CDC will examine patterns of antibiotic use in hospitals, through the analysis of pharmacy and other clinical data, with the primary objective of reducing the increase of superbugs.

Northwestern Memorial Hospital and the University of Utah Hospital are the first health care facilities to use TheraDoc Inc software to send AUR reports to the CDC. The hospitals implemented the TheraDoc Expert System Platform, Infection Control Assistant, and Antibiotic Assistant to improve infection control and the quality and safety of patient care.

The TheraDoc technology enables interoperability and connectivity with health care information technology systems while automating the timely collection and delivery of accurate clinical data. The technology significantly increases any individual's ability to compile and analyze clinical data, whether at the CDC, in the hospital, or at a state or federal public health agency. Once the program is implemented at other institutions,AUR reports from multiple hospitals across the country will allow nationwide surveillance of antimicrobial use and resistance, and, finally, earlier interventions by the CDC.

In particular, the national AUR eSurveillance project will do the following: detect antimicrobial-resistant pathogens; monitor nationwide antibiotic use; and investigate the relationship between antimicrobial drug use and emerging resistance.

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