Antibiotics: Drug Resistance

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 8th February 2019.

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Photo of Thangam Debbonaire Thangam Debbonaire Opposition Whip (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he has taken to establish an evidential basis on the time taken to diagnose disease in the NHS as part of the Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy.

Photo of Steve Brine Steve Brine The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

‘Tackling Antimicrobial Resistance (2019-2024): the UK’s five-year national action plan’ recognises that stewardship programmes are needed for both therapeutics and diagnostics. Good diagnostic stewardship promotes appropriate and timely testing.

Evidence suggests that a third of prescriptions in primary care do not have an associated diagnosis recorded. The national action plan sets out an ambition to improve the evidence base about diagnoses and prescriptions by linking and analysing clinical data sets.

Through the joint sepsis/Antimicrobial Resistance Commissioning for Quality Innovation data we know that the number of patients being identified with a suspicion of sepsis or severe infection has increased and that a majority of those patients have their treatment reviewed within 24-72 hours, following the confirmation of diagnostic test results.

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