[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Sunny
Sunny
98°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
October 17
1837 - Trapper Peter LaBeck killed by grizzly bear at El Tejon [story]


| Wednesday, Oct 10, 2012
Loading...

[UCLA] – Career paths can start to take shape in many unexpected ways. For UCLA physician Daniel Uslan, it all started in a class for kids called “It’s a Small World.” That’s when the five-year-old made sourdough bread with his father.

The tiny, bread-making bugs completely captivated him. “I was so fascinated by these microscopic bugs being able to create food,” recalled Uslan, now an assistant clinical professor of infectious diseases.

That early fascination with the world of small, living things drew him into a large-scale battle against drug-resistant “superbugs” and the improper use of antibiotics in treating infections.

Sadly, up to half of all antibiotic use is inappropriate or unnecessary, he said. This happens for many reasons; Physicians, for example, can err on the side of overprescribing antibiotics if they worry about missing an infection in their diagnosis.

The consequences of such practices are steep: Antibiotic-resistant infections cost the U.S. health care system more than $20 billion a year, with problems that include a dramatic rise in potentially deadly, drug-resistant bacteria such as MRSA.

“Overuse or misuse of antibiotics leads directly to patient harm. It leads directly to bacterial resistance,” Uslan said. “We are really at a crisis right now. We are now seeing bacteria for which we have no effective antibiotics.”

Uslan has been determined to do something about it.

Uslan, who joined UCLA in 2007, directs UCLA’s Antimicrobial Stewardship Program, which has managed to reduce antibiotic use by 15 percent and saved more than $1 million over the past two years by advising physicians on giving the right antibiotic at the right dose for the right duration.

Launched at UCLA in 2010, the program has helped decrease antibiotic use in some categories by as much as 33 percent.

Uslan and his team have helped improve outcomes for patients being treated with antibiotics for infection by providing oversight of antibiotic use as well as coaching providers who can advise physicians about when and how to use antibiotics appropriately.

This is no small feat. Team members, who are all experts in appropriate antibiotic use, have achieved an 85 percent acceptance rate among UCLA physicians, who have been given recommendations for improved antibiotic use based on audits of their patients’ charts.

Now Uslan is working to expand these efforts across the UC health system. Last December, he received a UC Center for Health Quality and Innovation fellowship to explore development of a UC-wide antimicrobial stewardship program.

“These programs are absolutely essential. They provide value by increasing the quality of care of patients with infections and by decreasing costs,” Uslan said.

Each UC medical center has an antimicrobial stewardship program in place, but they differ in how they are implemented, he explained. Uslan is analyzing what’s working and what can be changed. The goal is to provide substantial value. “We’re trying to learn from each other,” Uslan said. “By improving antibiotic use, you limit resistance. You limit antibiotic-associated toxicity. You improve patient outcomes. That’s sustainable.”

To accomplish these goals, a successful program requires a lot of coordination, from infectious disease physicians and pharmacists to microbiologists, project managers and infection control professionals, Uslan said. Doctors, for one, have to get comfortable with someone looking over their shoulder while prescribing, he said.

While change can be uncomfortable, momentum is building to address the antibiotics issue. In 2010, California developed the only statewide antimicrobial stewardship initiative to promote appropriate antibiotic use in health care facilities. A UC-wide antimicrobial stewardship program could help set standards for other California hospitals to follow.

“The only solutions are for drug companies to develop new antibiotics or for physicians to use antibiotics appropriately,” Uslan said. “This is a really tremendous opportunity for UC to lead in the state of California. UC can be a model for the rest of the state.”

As we enter cold and flu season, people can do their part to reduce the threat of antibiotic resistance, according to Uslan:

1) If you are seeing your doctor for a cold or flu, discuss the use of antibiotics with your physician. If it’s a viral infection, antibiotics aren’t effective and will only add to the problem of antibiotic resistance. Antibiotics are appropriately prescribed for only bacterial infections.

2) If your doctor determines that you do not have a bacterial infection, do not pressure your doctor to prescribe antibiotics. Instead, ask about methods you can use to reduce your symptoms.

3) Take antibiotics exactly as prescribed by your physician, even if you feel better.

4) Do not save leftover antibiotics for the next time you become sick.

5) Do not take antibiotics prescribed for someone else.

6) Do not assume that yellow or green mucus means that you need antibiotics. It is normal for mucus to get thick and change color during a viral cold.

7) The vast majority of sore throats do not require antibiotics. Only 5 percent to 15 percent of adult cases of sore throat are due to “strep.” If your doctor suspects strep throat, ask whether a throat swab is appropriate.

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

0 Comments

You can be the first one to leave a comment.

Leave a Comment


HIGHER EDUCATION LINKS
LOCAL COLLEGE HEADLINES
Tuesday, Oct 17, 2017
Raising a child is a demanding job for any parent, especially when supportive resources seem to be elusive or nonexistent.
Tuesday, Oct 17, 2017
A California State University, Northridge program that provides support to undergraduate students from underrepresented communities to pursue graduate degrees in the mathematical sciences has been named a 2017 Example of Excelencia in Education.
Monday, Oct 16, 2017
Although Friday the 13th is a day generally associated with bad luck, CalArts turned the superstition on its ear as the community celebrated the inauguration of its fourth president, Ravi S. Rajan.
Friday, Oct 13, 2017
With the purpose of creating career and job opportunities to individuals on the autism spectrum, College of the Canyons will launch the Uniquely Abled Academy in spring 2018.
Thursday, Oct 12, 2017
CSUN Athletics has unveiled a new Red Rally student section at men's soccer games for the remainder of the regular season.
Keep Up With Our Facebook

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
Registration for the Purple Walk of Strength is now open.
Oct. 21: Purple Walk of Strength to Benefit Domestic Violence Center
Raising a child is a demanding job for any parent, especially when supportive resources seem to be elusive or nonexistent.
Oct. 22: CSUN Hosts Special Needs Resource Fair
College of the Canyons dominated its match vs. Bakersfield College from start to finish on Friday night, resulting in a 5-1 victory over the Renegades for the Cougars' first conference win of the season.
COC Gets First Conference Win of Season Against Bakersfield College
RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Following a two-week layoff, College of the Canyons cross country was back in competition on Saturday, running with a mix of community college and Division I programs at the Sixth Annual UC Riverside Highlander Invitational.
COC Cross Country Back in Competition After Two Week Layoff
The race to qualify for the Big West Conference Men's Soccer Tournament continues for CSUN this week with a home match against UC Riverside Wednesday night before the Matadors head to UC Irvine Saturday.
Oct. 18: CSUN Faces Off Against UC Riverside
After 16 years as director of Parks, Recreation and Community Service for the city of Santa Clarita, Rick Gould announced Monday he's retiring in mid-December.
Rick Gould Retires as City’s Parks & Recreation Chief
High school seniors whose dream is to make a difference in the world by majoring in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) are invited to apply for Edison International’s $1.2 million Edison Scholars Program.
STEM Students Encouraged to Apply for Edison Scholars Program
Motor vehicle collisions are the leading cause of death for teenagers, ahead of all other types of injury, disease, or violence.
National Teen Driver Safety Week Underway
Elder abuse and scams targeting seniors are a growing problem, Santa Clarita detectives said, but there are numerous resources and protections available.
Resources, Outreach Available to SCV Victims of Elder Abuse
Despite rallying from an early 2-0 deficit, College of the Canyons dropped a 4-2 decision to visiting Victor Valley College on Friday.
Canyons Rally Not Enough To Hold Off Victor Valley College
The College of the Canyons baseball program and Playa Vista Orioles youth baseball organization will host a free instructional clinic for players ages 11-14 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 21, at Cougar Field.
Oct. 21: Youth Baseball Clinic at COC
A California State University, Northridge program that provides support to undergraduate students from underrepresented communities to pursue graduate degrees in the mathematical sciences has been named a 2017 Example of Excelencia in Education.
CSUN Math Program Lauded 2017 Example of Excelencia in Education
RE/MAX of Valencia will be hosting a blood drive benefiting Children's Hospital Los Angeles.
Nov. 1: RE/MAX Blood Drive to Benefit CHLA
Princess Cruises has officially announced its third annual Culinary Cruise Series, featuring famed Miami-based chefs Brad Kilgore and Scott Linquist.
Princess Cruises Will Feature Two Acclaimed Chefs in Culinary Cruise Series
1837 - Trapper Peter LaBeck killed by grizzly bear at El Tejon [story]
Tonight on SCV NewsBreak, Governor Brown signed off on a new bill that will change local water retailers distribute water in SCV. Plus, a spicy and savory Saturday for charity. Watch these stories and more on tonight's edition of SCV NewsBreak.
SCV NewsBreak for Monday, October 16, 2017
The Newhall School District's next Regular Board Meeting is Tuesday, October 17 at 6:15 p.m., and consideration of Newhall Family Theater approvals are on the agenda.
Oct. 17: Newhall School District Considers Newhall Family Theater OK
Master’s and Westmont College needed more than 90 minutes again Saturday to settle a Golden State Athletic Conference showdown in Santa Barbara.
Master’s Men Soccer Players Fall to Westmont in OT
Leaders from the CLWA and NCWC will meet in October, November and December to discuss their merger, which creates the Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency as of Jan. 1.
Next Step: Water Agency Officials to Share Merger Details
Master’s women soccer players and coaches alike were adamant after Saturday’s top-10 matchup that Westmont’s 5-2 win wasn’t nearly as lopsided as the score suggests.
Westmont Tops Master’s Women’s Soccer 5-2
Although Friday the 13th is a day generally associated with bad luck, CalArts turned the superstition on its ear as the community celebrated the inauguration of its fourth president, Ravi S. Rajan.
CalArts Inaugurates Ravi S. Rajan as Fourth President
CalArts School of Theater faculty Janie Geiser brings her collage film program "Double Vision" to REDCAT in downtown Los Angeles on Monday, Oct. 16 at 8:30 p.m.
Oct 16: ‘Double Vision’: Recent Films by Janie Geiser at REDCAT
The promising signs the Mustangs showed in their Missouri opener paid off in the evening Friday when Master’s women’s volleyball picked up its first road win of the season.
Master’s Rallies on the Road, Nets Season’s First Win
College of the Canyons' women's volleyball team opened Western State Conference play in style, as the Cougars swept visiting West L.A. College in straight sets.
No. 11 Canyons Sweeps West L.A. at the Cougar Cage
Route 66 Classic Grill in Canyon Country will host a fundraiser for local victims of the October 1 Las Vegas shootings on Saturday, October 28, from noon to 4 p.m.
Oct. 28: Route 66 Hosts Benefit for Las Vegas Shooting Victims
A roundup of the Santa Clarita arts-related events for Oct. 16-20, 2017.
Oct. 16-20: Santa Clarita Arts Upcoming Events
The Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce's October mixer is set for Wednesday, October 18 at Atria Senior Living in Newhall starting at 5:30 p.m.
Oct. 18: SCV Chamber October Mixer at Atria
The Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley will host a series of "Great Futures" tours for local residents in an effort to get the word out about the club's programs and services.
SCV Boys & Girls Club Hosts ‘Great Futures’ Tours
A special meeting of the Santa Clarita City Council, the Planning Commission, the Parks, Recreation and Communnity Services Commission, the Arts Commission, and the Open Space Preservation District Financial Accountability and Audit Panel is set for Tuesday, October 17 at City Hall.
Oct. 17: Harassment, Abusive Conduct Prevention Training for City Officials
The Hart Indians outscored the Canyon Cowboys 35-18 at Harry Welch Stadium Friday, October 13, in the teams' 50th matchup, and Kevin Karzin, president of the SCV Photographers Association, contributed photos from the game.
Photo Gallery: Hart Indians Beat Canyon Cowboys 35-18
Gov. Brown has vetoed a President Donald Trump-inspired proposal that would have required presidential candidates to release their tax returns in order to appear on the statewide ballot.
Brown Vetoes Bill Requiring Candidates Release Tax Returns
Gov. Jerry Brown signed a series of bills on Sunday calling for criminal justice reforms, including reduction of penalties for some gun and drug crimes and changes to the Megan's Law sex offender registry.
Brown Signs Bills for Criminal Justice Reforms
1853 - Sarah Gifford, community leader and wife of Newhall's first railroad station agent, born in England [story]
With the stroke of his pen Sunday, Gov. Jerry Brown eliminated the Castaic Lake Water Agency and Newhall County Water District and replaced them with a new water agency for the Santa Clarita Valley.
Brown Signs Wilk Bill Merging SCV Water Agencies
1939 - Second, larger OLPH Catholic Church dedicated on site of first (10th & Walnut, Newhall) [story]
Santa Clarita-based Princess Cruises celebrated the New York premiere of “Born to Dance,” the latest offering from its first-of-its-kind partnership with award-winning composer Stephen Schwartz and famed director/creator Daniel C. Levine.
Princess Cruises Celebrates NY Premiere of ‘Born to Dance’ With Schwartz, Levine