Self-administered outpatient parenteral antimicrobial therapy: a report of three years experience in the Irish healthcare setting

J Kieran, A O'Reilly, J Parker, S Clarke, C Bergin
European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases 2009, 28 (11): 1369-74
Outpatient parenteral antibiotic therapy (OPAT) was first reported in 1972. OPAT programmes are not well established in Ireland, with no reported outcomes in the literature. An OPAT programme was established at St. James Hospital in 2006. Demographics, diagnoses and outcomes of the first 60 courses are reported. A retrospective analysis of prospectively recorded data was performed on patients treated from March 2006 to February 2009. The data was analysed using SPSS v.17. Sixty OPAT courses were administered to 56 patients, 57 percent of which were male. The median age was 50 years, the median inpatient stay was 19 days, the median duration of OPAT was 16 days and 1,289 inpatient bed days were saved. The additional cost per day of OPAT was 167.60 euros. Vancomycin was the most prescribed antimicrobial, administered to 35%. Musculoskeletal infection was the indication for treatment in 50%. Confirmatory microbiological diagnosis was identified in 72%, most frequently due to Staphylococcus aureus (68%). Only minor adverse events were recorded. Clinical cure was achieved in 92.8%. A patient satisfaction survey showed high satisfaction. OPAT is a safe and effective way of providing parenteral antibiotic therapy in the Irish healthcare system. Better integration of funding and the appointment of Infectious Diseases specialists will facilitate its expansion.

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