Antimicrobial stewardship: a competency framework to support the role of nurses
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Antimicrobial stewardship: a competency framework to support the role of nurses

Molly Courtenay Professor, School of Healthcare Sciences, College of Biomedical and Life Sciences, Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales
Angel Chater , Professor, Centre for Health, Wellbeing and Behaviour Change, University of Bedfordshire, Bedford, England

Why you should read this article
  • To refresh your knowledge of antimicrobial resistance and antimicrobial stewardship

  • To understand the needs of nurses in fulfilling their role in antimicrobial stewardship

  • To discover an antimicrobial stewardship competency framework for education and practice

Antimicrobial resistance is a global threat that has prompted a global response. One strategy used to manage antimicrobial resistance is known as antimicrobial stewardship, its main goals being to optimise antibiotic use and avoid unnecessary antibiotic prescribing. There is an increase in the number of nurse prescribers, as well as in the percentage of antibiotics dispensed in primary care by non-medical prescribers, many of whom are nurses. Nurses, both prescribers and non-prescribers, play an important role in antimicrobial stewardship, including during the COVID-19 pandemic. To be able to fulfil that role, nurses need the right knowledge, skills, resources and behaviours. This article explores the role of nurses in antimicrobial stewardship and describes a competency framework designed to underpin it.

Primary Health Care. doi: 10.7748/phc.2021.e1709

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software


Conflict of interest

None declared

Courtenay M, Chater A (2021) Antimicrobial stewardship: a competency framework to support the role of nurses. Primary Health Care. doi: 10.7748/phc.2021.e1709

Published online: 24 March 2021

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