Pharmacy World and Science

, Volume 24, Issue 5, pp 182–187 | Cite as

The identification of barriers preventing the successful implementation of a surgical prophylaxis protocol

  • Kathryn M. Burnett
  • Michael G. Scott
  • Patricia M. Kearney
  • W. George Humphreys
  • Robert M. McMillen


Aim: The aim of this study was to introduce a protocol for the use of antimicrobials in surgical prophylaxis for the described procedures in Antrim Area Hospital. Method: Historical data of antimicrobial use were obtained from retrospective analysis of patients" charts, for those patients identified as having one of the following ‘clean / contaminated’ surgical procedures over the previous six months; cholecystectomy or abdominal hysterectomy. These data were analysed, and a protocol was introduced providing guidelines for the choice of antimicrobial agent, its administration time, route, dose, duration and frequency of treatment. Main outcome measure: The main outcome measure was the success of the uptake of the protocol following its implementation. Results: There was a total of 285 patients identified, 105 prior to and 180 post implementation. Overall, 68% of patients received some form of prophylaxis in the first cycle, and 72% in the second. Conclusion: Although the introduction of the protocol led to slight improvements in compliance with standard prescribing procedures, with an increase in single‐dose prophylaxis, and a reduction in prolonged prophylactic treatment, the improvements did not reach expectations. This paper attempts to identify the possible barriers to protocol implementation.

Compliance Implementation Prophylaxis Protocols Surgery 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathryn M. Burnett
    • 1
  • Michael G. Scott
    • 1
  • Patricia M. Kearney
    • 2
  • W. George Humphreys
    • 3
  • Robert M. McMillen
    • 4
  1. 1.Antrim Hospital Academic Pharmacy Practice UnitAntrim Area HospitalAntrimUK
  2. 2.Antrim Microbiology DepartmentAntrim Area HospitalAntrimUK
  3. 3.Surgical DirectorateAntrim Area HospitalAntrimUK
  4. 4.Woman and Child Health DirectorateAntrim Area HospitalAntrimUK

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