Self-reported antimicrobial stewardship practices in primary care using the target antibiotics self-assessment tool

Leah Ffion Jones, Neville Verlander, Donna Lecky, Sabeen Altaf, Dirk Pilat, Cliodna McNulty*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The self-assessment tool (SAT) is a 16-question self-report of antimicrobial stewardship practices in primary care, available in the TARGET (Treat Antibiotics Responsibly, Guidance Education and Tools) Antibiotics Toolkit. This study analysed responses to the SAT and compared them to previous SAT data (2014–2016). Data from June 2016 to September 2019 were anonymised and analysed using Microsoft Excel and STATA 15. Clinicians reported engaging in positive antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) practices including using antibiotic guidance to inform treatment decisions (98%, 98% 2014–2016), discussing antibiotic prescribing within the practice (73%, 67% 2014–2016), using patient-facing resources (94%, 71% 2014–2016), conducting antibiotic audits in the last two years (98%, 45% 2014–2016), keeping written records and action plans (81%, 62% 2014– 2016), using back-up prescribing (99%, 94% 2014–2016) and using clinical coding (80%, 75% 2014– 2016). Areas for improvement include developing strategies to avoid patients reconsulting to obtain antibiotics (45%, 33% 2014–2016), undertaking infection-related learning (37%, 29% 2014–2016), ensuring all temporary prescribers have access to antibiotic guidance (55%, 63% 2014–2016) and making patient information leaflets easily available during consultations (31%). The findings offer a unique insight into AMS in primary care over time. The SAT gives primary care clinicians and commissioners an opportunity to reflect on their AMS and learning.

Original languageEnglish
Article number253
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • Antimicrobial resistance
  • Antimicrobial stewardship
  • General practice
  • Primary care
  • Self-assessment


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