The role of behavior change in antimicrobial stewardship

Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2014 Jun;28(2):169-75. doi: 10.1016/j.idc.2014.01.004. Epub 2014 Apr 5.


Emerging evidence suggests that antimicrobial prescribing behaviors are influenced by local culture and a prescribing etiquette that is abided by all health care professionals. Local cultural unspoken rules often play a more pivotal role than the recommendations of guidelines and policies drawn up by experts in influencing antimicrobial prescribing. It is important to recognize the key drivers of prescribing behaviors and the incentives to alter behaviors and to incorporate these into stewardship programs. This review summarizes key concepts in behavior change in antimicrobial prescribing and the gaps that exist in addressing behavior change in this field.

Keywords: Antimicrobial stewardship; Behavior change; Interventions; Prescribing behavior.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Bacterial Infections / drug therapy*
  • Culture
  • Drug Prescriptions / standards*
  • Drug Resistance, Microbial*
  • Drug Utilization / standards*
  • Guideline Adherence / standards
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents