IRVING, Texas (BUSINESS WIRE), July 01, 2020 - A study facilitated by Vizient, Inc. and recently published in the Journal of American Medical Association Internal Medicine yielded new insights about patients with presumed penicillin allergies. The study, led by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital, found that physicians unnecessarily prescribe inferior antibiotic alternatives to patients with documented penicillin allergies. Because 90% of documented penicillin allergies are unconfirmed, researchers conclude that some substitutions are unnecessary, less effective and can even be harmful.

The Vizient Pharmacy Network Antimicrobial Stewardship Committee provided the platform for the study as well as facilitated communications and access to data. The dataset included nearly 11,000 inpatients on antibiotics from 106 Vizient member hospitals in the U.S. The research team found that 16% of hospitalized patients with a documented, but unconfirmed, penicillin allergy were twice as likely to be prescribed alternative antibiotics.

“Vizient was pleased to facilitate this research project,” said Karl Matuszewski, vice president, Member Connections for Vizient. “The collaborative effort has sparked insight into antimicrobial stewardship and can be used for hospitals to assess their procedures surrounding dispensation of antibiotics to improve patient outcomes.”

“The Vizient Antimicrobial Stewardship Committee is an interdisciplinary group of physicians and pharmacists committed to improving antimicrobial utilization at their local institutions and sharing their experience to all hospitals across the United States,” said Lucas Schulz, the Clinical Coordinator of Infectious Diseases at the University of Wisconsin Health and chair of the Vizient committee. “This study represents the power of collaboration and multi-center research. The results should improve care for patients at Vizient member hospitals and all hospitals.”

Researchers performed the national cross-sectional study of hospitalized patients between September and October of 2018. Respondents answered questions about hospital details, such as hospital type and whether an antibiotic-stewardship team was present as well as questions about penicillin allergy assessment resources, such as access to inpatient allergy consultations and access to penicillin skin testing.

Vizient is the largest member-driven health care performance improvement company in the United States. The study “Association Between Penicillin Allergy Documentation and Antibiotic Use” can be viewed here.

About Vizient, Inc.

Vizient, Inc. provides solutions and services that improve the delivery of high-value care by aligning cost, quality and market performance for more than 50% of the nation’s acute care providers, which includes 95% of the nation’s academic medical centers, and more than 20% of ambulatory providers. Vizient provides expertise, analytics and advisory services, as well as a contract portfolio that represents more than $100 billion in annual purchasing volume, to improve patient outcomes and lower costs. Vizient has earned a World’s Most Ethical Company designation from the Ethisphere Institute every year since its inception. Headquartered in Irving, Texas, Vizient has offices throughout the United States. Learn more at www.vizientinc.com.


Angie Boliver
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