January 2023

How primary care can improve antimicrobial stewardship

December 9, 2022

Antimicrobial resistance — when pathogens develop resistance to drugs used to fight them — is a serious threat to health care in New Zealand and around the world. Antimicrobial stewardship — ie careful and appropriate use of antimicrobial drugs (including antibiotics) — is vital to preserving the effectiveness of these medicines.

This article explains the key role of primary care in antimicrobial stewardship. There is a clear role for prescribers, but nonprescribers such as primary health care nurses also have an important part to play in supporting the appropriate use of antimicrobials.

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