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Title: Is 24 hour observation in hospital after stopping intravenous antibiotics in neonates justified?
Authors: Fenech, Josella
Andrejevic, Hermoine
Said Conti, Valerie
Attard Montalto, Simon
Keywords: Newborn infants -- Diseases -- Chemotherapy
Hospitals -- Observation units -- Malta
Hospitals -- Observation units -- Evaluation
Newborn infants -- Patient monitoring
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Malta Medical Journal
Citation: Malta Medical Journal. 2009, Vol.21(4), p. 24-27
Abstract: Background: Antibiotics are given empirically for suspected sepsis in up to 75% of neonates on the Neonatal and Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (NPICU), after completion of a septic screen. Treatment is discontinued on day 3 if cultures remain negative or after 7-14 days with proven sepsis and, until recently, these neonates are then observed for an additional period of 24 hours before being discharged from hospital. Aim: To assess whether the 24 hour observation period after stopping antibiotics is clinically justified and, if not, whether neonates can be discharged safely on the same day when antibiotics are stopped. Methods: A consecutive sample of 95 babies admitted to NPICU, and who received antibiotics, from December 2006 to January 2008 were analysed prospectively. Their clinical presentation, predisposing risk factors for neonatal sepsis, investigations, antibiotic details and medical management including respiratory support were recorded, and correlated with all events that may have occurred during the observation period after stopping antibiotics. Results: No adverse events were documented in the 24 hour period after antibiotics in all 95 neonates in this study and, therefore, there was no association with any potential predisposing risk factors. Conclusion: The need to observe neonates for a period prior to discharge after stopping antibiotics is not supported on clinical grounds and, as a result of this study, has been discontinued. Neonates can be discharged from hospital safely and immediately on stopping antibiotics, thus reducing hospital stay and an estimated cost saving of approximately €18,000 to the service provider per annum.
Appears in Collections:MMJ, Volume 21, Issue 4
MMJ, Volume 21, Issue 4
Scholarly Works - FacM&SPae

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