The Communicable Disease Service of the New Jersey Department of Health has recognized Hackensack Meridian Mountainside Medical Center as a 2021 Antimicrobial Steward. This award recognizes facilities who have promoted antimicrobial stewardship practices from 2020 to 2021 that encourage and maintain the health of patients, personnel and the general New Jersey population.
The New Jersey Antimicrobial Stewardship Recognition Program (ASRP) is voluntary and encourages healthcare facilities to assess how well they are applying the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Core Elements of Antibiotic Stewardship, a set of key principles to guide efforts to improve antibiotic use, advance patient safety and improve outcomes. Given the recent demands on healthcare facilities, the antimicrobial stewardship team has had to work harder than ever to respond to patient needs during the pandemic while ramping up efforts to curb resistant infections and ensure appropriate antimicrobial use.
“Tremendous strides in antimicrobial stewardship have been made over the last few years, largely due to the efforts of a cohesive multidisciplinary team led by Punit Gupta, M.D., chair of infectious disease, and Mona Nashed, clinical pharmacy coordinator, as well as the full support of the administrative team,” said Julia Ilyin, director of pharmacy at Mountainside Medical Center. “They believe strongly in the value and importance of the antimicrobial stewardship program and recognize that antibiotics should be treated as precious resources that need to be conserved for future generations.”
The ASRP application evaluates metrics on hospital leadership commitment, accountability, pharmacy expertise, action, tracking, reporting and education and awards facilities at gold, silver or bronze levels.
“The silver recognition for Mountainside proves that our pharmacy team is devoted to improving the use of antimicrobial medications in our facility as we continue to protect our patient population,” said Valerie Allusson, M.D., chief medical officer at Mountainside Medical Center. “COVID-19 can exacerbate antimicrobial resistance and it is extremely important that we continue to reduce the occurrence of antimicrobial-related events as new variants of the virus are discovered.”