Impact of COVID-19 pandemic on pharmacist-led allergy assessments and penicillin skin testing

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Allergy assessments and penicillin skin testing are associated with reductions in high-Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI)-risk antibiotic use and lower hospital-acquired CDI rates; however, these activities require substantial personnel and resource allocation. Recently, many antimicrobial stewardship programs’ (ASPs) focus shifted towards supporting the COVID-19 pandemic response. We evaluated the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on a pharmacist-led allergy assessment and penicillin skin testing program. Patients undergoing allergy assessment and/or penicillin skin testing (PST) from 1 January 2017 through 30 April 2021 were included for review. Monthly PST and allergy assessment rates were calculated and defined as the number of PSTs or allergy assessments per 1000 unique patient encounters for each month, respectively. The study used interrupted time series regression to assess potential level and slope changes in allergy assessments and PSTs during the pandemic. 200 058 total inpatient encounters by 188 867 unique patients occurred during the study period. ASP performed 918 allergy assessments and 204 PSTs. The local onset of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic during March 2020 was associated with significant level reductions in allergy assessments and PSTs. Additional responsibilities added to the ASP team during the COVID-19 pandemic limited the ability to perform core antimicrobial stewardship activities with proven patient care benefits.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Spivey, J; Deri, CR; Wrenn, RH; Turner, NA

Published Date

  • January 1, 2022

Published In

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1445-937X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1002/jppr.1808

Citation Source

  • Scopus