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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 122-129

Knowledge and perceptions of antimicrobial stewardship program among health-care students in Saudi Arabia

1 Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Pharmacy Practice Research Unit (PPRU), College of Pharmacy, Jazan University, Jazan, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Pharmacology, College of Pharmacy, Jazan University, Jazan, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
3 Department of Pharmaceuitcs, College of Pharmacy, Jazan University, Jazan, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Pankaj Tripathi
Department of Pharmacology, College of Pharmacy, Jazan University, Jazan
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/sjhs.sjhs_192_19

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Background: National antimicrobial stewardship program (AMS) is an initiative to prevent antibiotic misadventures. Currently, AMS is not compulsory as part of the undergraduate health-care students in Saudi Arabia. Identifying gaps in knowledge and a better understanding of their perceptions about AMS could assist in recommendations for appropriate changes to the curricula that may lead to more appropriate use of antimicrobials within the multidisciplinary team. Objective: The objective of this study was to assess the AMS knowledge and perceptions among health-care students – pharmacy, medicine, dental, nursing, and microbiology. Methods: A cross-sectional, descriptive survey was conducted among health-care students of different colleges of Jazan University, Saudi Arabia. Collected data were analyzed using SPSS version 23. Results: A questionnaire was supplied to 563 students and 390 (69.27%) responded. AMS was known to 71% of the participants, while 50.3% were familiar with AMS in Saudi Arabia, with a significant difference among students of different health-care colleges. The broad appreciation of AMS goals, team members, and role of pharmacist was more among dental, microbiology, and pharmacy students as against nursing and general medicine. All health-care students possess good knowledge about causes of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Formal training on AMS was received by merely 48.97% of the participants. A clear majority (80.8%) opined that better understanding of antimicrobial use is important for career, and 79.0% registered a need of incorporating AMS training in curricula. Conclusions: Concepts of AMS need to be included in the undergraduate health-care curricula to promote the rational use of antimicrobials and minimize incidences of AMR to improve clinical outcomes.

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