Antimicrobial stewardship (AMS)

This toolkit provides information, resources and quality improvement (QI) tools for managers and clinicians to improve Antimicrobial Stewardship programs in NSW health services. The resources may be adapted to suit local needs to review, improve or support current practices.

Antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) is the term used to describe the activities, strategies and coordinated interventions designed to optimise antimicrobial use. AMS is used by hospitals and health organisations to promote the quality use of antimicrobials.

Key AMS principles include:

  • Using antimicrobials only when needed - avoiding use where there is no evidence of benefit
  • Selecting antimicrobials wisely - using narrow spectrum therapy where possible, keeping broader-spectrums agents in reserve
  • Ensuring safe and effective doses - using correct doses and limiting duration to what is needed according to evidence.

This toolkit will assist in targeting AMS processes across all services including metropolitan, regional and rural acute care. Health services can choose the sections of the toolkit that best meet their needs and adapt these as necessary.

Please provide us with feedback at on the usefulness of the toolkit or suggestions for improvement.

To join the AMS Quality Improvement Community of Practice (hosted via the Quality Improvement Data System - QIDS) the project team must first complete the online registration form (note – QIDS is only available to NSW Health employees).

Following this, the CEC will add the project team to the AMS Toolkit Improvement Project in QIDS.

Via QIDS, project teams will be able to:

  • Access additional resources and QI tools, including AMS specific examples
  • Manage their own improvement project
  • Collaborate with other teams aiming to improve the quality use of antimicrobials.

The QIDS Icon icon is used throughout the toolkit to indicate when and how to use QIDS for your improvement project.