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Washington Regional Leads the State in Antimicrobial Stewardship

Fayetteville, AR - "Washington Regional has been chosen as an Antimicrobial Stewardship Center of Excellence. This is a wonderful designation we just received." Dr. Buddy Newton heads the Antimicrobial Stewardship program at Washington Regional. He says that this designation is the first for the state of Arkansas.
"The CDC has a list of core elements that any antibiotic stewardship program needs to fulfill. And what the center of excellence is is that we've shown that we've been able to do that. And not only are we doing it, but we're doing it far and above what is expected. There's only been thirty eight hospitals that have received this designation across the country. We're the first one in the state, first one in our region." 
"What antimicrobial stewardship is is the right drug, at the right dose, at the right time, for the right amount of time. Unfortunately the pipeline is drying up. There's not a lot of new antibiotics coming. Because of that, we're trying to make the best of what we do have. The problem is when you misuse those antibiotics, it allows the bacteria to develop resistance. When that happens, they don't work as well. And you may lose a whole class of antibiotics and have to go to the next one. The problem is is with nothing coming in to backfill, you're going to run out of medicine eventually. So what we're trying to do is we're trying to be better stewards of what we have."
"In 2016 there were over two million infections caused by antibiotic resistant organisms. Of those, twenty three thousand people died. And if you kind of put that on a scale of what we can understand, it's like the population of Eureka Springs dying off every month. You know, that's twenty three thousand people over the course of a year. And it doesn't stop at one year. It keeps going the next and only gets worse. The more resistance we see, the more infections we see and the more people that die from it we see. So we're trying to limit that. And that's what antibiotic stewardship is."
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