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Core Elements of Outpatient Antibiotic Stewardship

For Healthcare Professionals

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The Core Elements of Outpatient Antibiotic Stewardship provides a framework for antibiotic stewardship for outpatient clinicians and facilities that routinely provide antibiotic treatment. This report augments existing guidance for other clinical settings. In 2014 and 2015, respectively, CDC released the Core Elements of Hospital Antibiotic Stewardship Programs and the Core Elements of Antibiotic Stewardship for Nursing Homes. Antibiotic stewardship is the effort to measure and improve how antibiotics are prescribed by clinicians and used by patients. Improving antibiotic prescribing involves implementing effective strategies to modify prescribing practices to align them with evidence-based recommendations for diagnosis and management.


  • MITIGATE Antimicrobial Stewardship Toolkit [PDF – 47 pages] – This guide is a toolkit for emergency departments and urgent care centers to implement locally relevant, effective, and practical antibiotic stewardship. When used, it will fulfill the Core Elements of Outpatient Antibiotic Stewardship. Developed by the MITIGATE study team and available at the Quality Improvement Organizations (QIO Program) Antibiotic Stewardship Resources webpage.
  • Print Materials for Healthcare Professionals —including commitment posters; fact sheets to share with your patients; and patient information on delayed prescribing, watchful waiting, and symptomatic relief for viral illness
  • Continuing Education and Curriculum Opportunities —including training for healthcare professionals, pharmacists, and medical students on prescribing antibiotics appropriately and communications training
  • Outpatient Treatment Recommendations —Summary of recommendations from national clinical practice guidelines for appropriate antibiotic prescribing for common outpatient infections

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