Background: Antimicrobial resistance (AR) is a threat to hospitalized children, and more information is needed to motivate physicians to adopt evidence-based practices such as those in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Campaign to Prevent Antimicrobial Resistance.
Methods: The framework of the Health Belief Model (HBM) was used to assess personal perceptions and cues to action related to the prevention of AR in 3 national focus groups in August 2003.
Results: Twenty-five physicians who treat hospitalized children participated; all reported that they had cared for a patient with an antimicrobial-resistant organism. Physicians perceived that AR was more of a problem nationally (92%) than in their institution (76%) or practice (60%) and reported that issues such as nursing shortage, cost of health care, and lack of specialty services presented more of a challenge to the care of hospitalized children than AR. Reported preferences of cues to action included journal articles (80%), infectious disease experts (76%), and colleagues (52%).
Conclusions: The HBM provides insight into physicians' perceptions about AR and preferred cues to action, which yield valuable information concerning the modes, methods, and messengers to intervene on problems such as antimicrobial resistance in hospitalized children.