Antimicrobial stewardship knowledge and perception among physicians and pharmacists at leading tertiary teaching hospitals in Zambia : implications for future policy and practice

Kalungia, Aubrey Chichonyi and Mwambula, Haabingozi and Munkombwe, Derick and Marshall, Sarah and Schellack, Natalie and May, Claire and St. Claire Jones, Anja and Godman, Brian (2019) Antimicrobial stewardship knowledge and perception among physicians and pharmacists at leading tertiary teaching hospitals in Zambia : implications for future policy and practice. Journal of Chemotherapy, 31 (7-8). pp. 378-387. ISSN 1120-009X

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    Abstract

    Background: Antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) is a key strategy promoting rational antimicrobial use. In Zambia, information on health professionals’ knowledge, attitude, and practice of AMS is limited. This study was undertaken to address this at Zambia’s leading specialised teaching hospitals. Methods: Descriptive, cross-sectional study involving 137 physicians and 61 pharmacists. Results: AMS knowledge was relatively low among physicians (51%) and pharmacists (39%). Few physicians (9%) and pharmacists (20%) demonstrated sufficient knowledge of the basic principles of AMS. Physicians’ and pharmacists’ knowledge levels were significantly associated with years of practice, job position or practice rank, and previous AMS training. The majority (95%) perceived AMR as a current problem in their practise. Most physicians (92%) and pharmacists (86%) had not undertaken AMS training before. All indicated the need for context-specific educational interventions to promote AMS in Zambia. Conclusion: Despite positive perceptions, basic knowledge of AMS was relatively low. Context-specific educational interventions and capacity building are needed to address AMS gaps.